Cigna Terminates Anthem Merger Deal, Seeks Nearly $15 Billion In Restitution

By Tomi Kilgore Markets MarketWatch Pulse

Cigna Corp. disclosed in filing Tuesday that it has terminated the merger deal with Anthem Inc. , six days after a court ruling to enjoin the proposed merger, and about 19 months after the $48 billion merger was announced. Cigna said has filed suit against Anthem, seeking a $1.85 billion reverse termination fee and more than $13 billion in additional damages, which includes the amount of premium Cigna shareholders did not realize. Cigna said it decided to terminate the deal after a district court found that the merger would decrease competition and choices for consumers. Cigna's decision marked the second big healthcare merger that was terminated Tuesday, after Aetna Inc. and Humana Inc. agreed to end their $34 billion merger, also after 19 months. Cigna said Tuesday that it while it was "disappointed" in the merger's failure, it was moving ahead by expanding its stock repurchase program to a total of $3.7 billion. The company said its 2017 outlook for adjusted earnings growth will get a boost from the "significant" capital available for deployment. Cigna's stock was up 0.4% in afternoon trade, while Anthem shares slipped 0.2%. Over the past 12 months, Cigna's stock has gained 12%, Anthem shares have rallied 34% and the S&P 500 has gained 25%.

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