Abbott Labs raises quarterly dividend to 32 cents vs. 28 cents

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Generic drug makers stocks fall sharply after report of expanded price-fixing probe

Shares of generic drug makers fell sharply Monday, after a Washington Post report that an antitrust lawsuit brought by states over two drugs in 2016 has expanded into a major probe of alleged price-fixing. The case now involves at least 16 companies and 300 drugs, the report said, citing Joseph Nielsen, an assistant attorney general and antitrust investigator in Connecticut, who has been a leader in the probe. Nielsen is quoted as saying, “this is most likely the largest cartel in the history of the United States.” The victims were consumers and taxpayers, who have been carrying the high cost of overcharges on common antiboitics, blood-pressure medications, arthritis treatments, anxiety pills and more, said the report. Teva Pharmaceuticals Industries Ltd. ADRs fell 5.7% on the news. Mylan NV was down 4.6%, and Dr. Reddy Labs Ltd was down 3%. Abbott Labs was down 1.4% and Pfizer Inc. was down 1.6%. The S&P 500 was down 1.8% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down about 2%.

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