Rumors: Teva abandons price-fixing settlement

May 18, 2020

Teva Pharma has reportedly abandoned settlement talks related to a a federal price-fixing probe, betting that its role in aiding the U.S. coronavirus response will discourage the DOJ from pursuing criminal charges.

The generics giant was named last year in an antitrust lawsuit brought by over 40 US states alleging a price-fixing conspiracy among several drug manufacturers.

According to a New York Times report, Teva has denied wrongdoing in the suit and has been holding settlement negotiations with US officials -- but these negotiations stopped in April. The decision to walk away from negotiations comes amid Teva donating millions of doses of possible coronavirus treatment hydroxychloroquine to the US government.

The Justice Department has previously reached settlement deals with four other drugmakers in the same probe, totally $224 million in penalties.

Teva has also been grappling with the financial fallout of ongoing opioid lawsuits in the U.S. In August of last year, Teva’s CFO resigned amid the drugmaker's ongoing financial woes.

The company recently released stronger than expected first quarter results, citing an increasing demand for generic and OTC products and respiratory products. At the end of the results, included under "Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements" was a bulleted list of factors that could cause or contribute to differences in projections, but no specific mention of the price-fixing settlement was included.