Top of the morning to you, and a fine one, it is. Despite the rising humidity, we are enjoying a shiny sun and hints of a cool breeze wafting about the Pharmalot campus, where the shortest person is now sleeping in, since the local summer job has come to an end. Our own work, however, proceeds apace. And this calls for firing up the coffee kettle and quaffing a few cups of stimulation. Feel free to join us or, if you prefer, grab a mug of water before you tackle your own to-do list. Hope all goes well on your journey today and, as always, do keep in touch …

In a biting letter to Cigna (CI) shareholders, Carl Icahn called the proposed $54 billion acquisition of Express Scripts (ESRX) “completely ridiculous” and argued the insurer is “dramatically overpaying for a highly challenged (company) that is facing existential risks on several fronts.” He cited “regulatory risk” caused by “opposition to the highly flawed rebate system,” which will hurt Express Scripts profits, and pointed to “competitive risk from Amazon (AMZN), arguably the strongest competitor in the world, will be an existential threat to PBMs like Express Scripts, possibly challenging their very existence.”

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