The deal, along with Aetna Inc.’s proposed tie-up with Humana Inc., which was blocked last month, was set to reduce the ranks of big U.S. health insurers to three from five and make Anthem the largest by membership.
The decision casts in doubt the industry's other big proposed merger—Indianapolis-based Anthem Inc.'s $48 billion bid for Cigna Corp. A ruling on the Justice Department's challenge of the Anthem deal is pending.
U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson in Washington, D.C., will issue a decision on whether the combination of the companies risks higher costs for large employers around the country and should be blocked.
Twenty-three percent of Cigna's domestic revenue would need to be rebranded to comply with rules of the Blue Cross Blue Shield association, said Anthem executive Steve Schlegel under questioning Wednesday by a Justice Department lawyer.
The rift between merging health insurance companies Cigna Corp. and Anthem Inc. came further into public view Tuesday as transcripts of testimony from both chief executives were unsealed during a U.S. antitrust trial