Stocks are showing notable weakness during mid-morning trading on Monday, as traders cash in on the market's recent gains amid some uncertainty about the impending earnings season. A number of big-name companies are due to release their results over the course of the week.
In corporate news, Express Scripts (ESRX), one of North America's largest pharmacy benefits management companies, announced the signing of a definitive agreement to acquire health insurer WellPoint's (WLP) NextRx subsidiaries for $4.675 billion.
Express Scripts noted that the transaction value includes consideration for the value of a future tax benefit for the company based on the structure of the transaction.
Meanwhile, the Treasury Department is directing General Motors Corp. (GM) to prepare for a bankruptcy filing by a June 1 deadline, the New York Times reported, citing unidentified people with knowledge of the plans.
Auto task force members held talks with General Motors officials last week and are expected to continue discussions this week, the report added.
The report specified that one plan under consideration would create a new company that would buy the good assets of the company almost immediately after the carmaker files for bankruptcy.
In recent trading, the major averages have well off their worst levels of the day, although they remain stuck in negative territory. The Dow is currently down 77.34 at 8,006.04, the Nasdaq is down 8.70 at 1,643.84 and the S&P 500 is down 4.44 at 852.12.
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