Consumer Companies Up On Fed Bets - Consumer Roundup

Shares of health-care companies ticked up as traders hedged their bets on the impact of regulation in the sector.

Bucking the trend of a retreat from health-care exchanges, Centene said it would expand its offerings in the Affordable Care Act insurance marketplaces. Centene plans to add exchange plans in Kansas, Missouri and Nevada next year, even as many large insurers such as UnitedHealth Group quit the exchanges because of trouble turning a profit.

Eli Lilly said a pain drug developed with Pfizer received fast-track designation from the Food and Drug Administration.

--By Rob Curran,

Shares of retailers and other consumer-services companies rose as traders bet the Federal Reserve's statement Wednesday wouldn't be as hawkish as previously feared.

Analysts at brokerage Bank of America Merrill Lynch Global Research predicted that the statement will have "dovish undertones."

Interest rates are a critical factor in the outlook for home sales, which in turn affect a broad range of discretionary spending. Neiman Marcus Group Chief Executive Karen Katz said the company has abandoned talks to sell the luxury department store chain and will go it alone.

The Cheesecake Factory broke a seven-year winning streak, becoming the latest restaurant to succumb to pressures roiling the restaurant industry.

(--By Rob Curran,

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

June 13, 2017 16:39 ET (20:39 GMT)