The U.S. health insurance market, roiled by transformative deals in recent years, will likely face a lull in major deal activity in 2020 while firms await critical federal election outcomes, industry executives said. Looking to diversify, gain scale and efficiencies, pharmacy giant CVS Health in late 2018 closed a $70 billion acquisition of health insurance major Aetna. Cigna followed shortly with the $54 billion purchase of pharmacy benefits major Express Scripts. The moves fueled speculation that other buyers like Walgreens Boots Alliance or Walmart would look to emulate CVS’s strategy and buy a health insurer like Humana, or that insurer Anthem could make another huge move after its $50.4 billion attempt to buy Cigna in 2015 was blocked by regulatory opposition. But so far, merger activity appears to be confined to smaller deals in Medicaid- and Medicare-focused companies, such as Centene’s $15.4 billion purchase of WellCare Health Plans and its 2016 purchase of California’s Health Net for about $6 billion.
Read the full article: Feel the Bern: Presidential Race Throws Cold Water on Health Insurance Mega-Mergers //