PHARMACEUTICALS

Slightly cheaper version

of EpiPen is coming soon

A generic drugmaker plans to start selling a slightly cheaper version of the EpiPen in the U.S. early next year.

The penlike injectors are used to treat life-threatening allergic reactions. Brand-name EpiPen, which dominates the market, has been in short supply since spring because of production problems.

Drugmaker Sandoz said Thursday the price of two generic injectors will be $250 without insurance. Two other generics on the market in the U.S. cost $300 a pair. Brand-name EpiPens sold by Mylan cost at least twice as much.

The price people pay varies, though, depending on insurance and discounts.

Mylan was blasted in the past for price hikes that pushed the price over $600. It responded by selling its own generic.

 

STOCK MARKET

Stocks make up ground

after initial early plunge

Stocks clawed back much of the ground they lost in an early plunge triggered by the arrest of a senior Chinese technology executive.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 index ended slightly lower Thursday, having taken a nosedive in the morning.

Technology shares including Netflix moved higher.

Investors were encouraged by a report that the Federal Reserve may move slower in raising rates.

Bond yields remained lower as investors moved money into lower-risk investments.

The Dow lost 79 points, or 0.3 percent, to 24,947. It was down 784 earlier. The S&P 500 lost 4 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,695. The Nasdaq rose 29 points, or 0.4 percent, to 7,188.

 

RETAIL

Large shareholder

offers to buy Sears

Eddie Lampert and his ESL Holdings hedge fund are offering to buy the rest of Sears for up to $4.6 billion in cash and stock.

The Sears chairman and ESL own just under half of the Hoffman Estates, Illinois, company, according to FactSet. Sears filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in October, weighed down by years of declining sales and massive debt.

ESL Holdings said in a regulatory filing Thursday that its nonbinding offer for roughly 500 remaining Sears stores will keep about 50,000 employees working. The offer is subject to due diligence and ESL's ability to get financing, among other things.

"ESL believes that a future for Sears as a going concern is the only way to preserve tens of thousands of jobs and bring continued economic benefits to the many communities across the United States that are touched by Sears and Kmart stores," the firm said in a prepared statement.

Sears filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in October, saying it would shutter 142 unprofitable stores in the hopes that it could stay in business.