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CVS has a mixed quarter as it envelops Aetna

February 20, 2019 / Daphne Howland

CVS Health on Wednesday reported that fourth quarter revenue rose 12.5% to $54.4 billion, in a period that it completed its $70 billion acquisition of health insurer Aetna. Revenues in the quarter from front-store retail plus long-term care operations rose 5.4% to $22 billion, mostly driven by a prescription volume and branded drug price bumps, partially offset by reimbursement pressure and generic drug introductions, according to a company press release. Total same-store sales rose 5.7%, but front-store same-store sales rose just 0.5%, as pharmacy (7.4%) and prescription volume (9.1%) same-store increases carried the day. Adjusted operating income rose 4.5% and 2.5% for the year, the company also said. Net loss, for both the quarter and full year, was driven primarily by goodwill impairment charges in the Retail/LTC segment and the increase in interest expense due to the financing of the Aetna acquisition, the company said.