Health Care Higher After Earnings -- Health Care Roundup

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Shares of health-care companies rose after strong earnings from two of the largest companies in the sector.

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Shares of UnitedHealth Group rallied, seeing their biggest price gain in a 33-year stock-market run after the largest health insurer by enrollees posted revenue growth that surpassed the average analyst target. Executives at UnitedHealth said President Donald Trump's recent order on short-term insurance policies could open up opportunities in an area of its expertise.

On Tuesday, however, two senators, Lamar Alexander (R., Tenn.) and Patty Murray (D., Wash.), finalized the basics of a bipartisan deal designed to shore up the nation's health-insurance markets. The bill would, among other things, preserve for two years the billions of dollars in payments made to insurers that Mr. Trump was seeking to stop.

Health-care conglomerate Johnson & Johnson advanced after it boosted sales and earnings projections for the year, bolstered by third-quarter growth. J&J, one of the largest health-products companies by revenue based in the U.S., urged lawmakers in Washington to "unite behind" a plan to overhaul the corporate tax system.

Rob Curran, rob.curran@dowjones.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

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October 17, 2017 18:05 ET (22:05 GMT)