NEW YORK (
) -- Drugstore stocks are giving up earlier gains, even as prescription drug volume jumped 5.7% during the first quarter, according to Fitch Ratings.
While prescription volume is up, most of this increase isn't attributable to drugstores. Instead,
NextRx division in 2009 and
Medco Health Solutions
were the biggest contributors.
Pharmacy benefit managers also saw stronger dispensing rates than retailers.
has both a substantial retail and PBM business.
, however, are dependent on their retail locations.
Rite Aid is up 3.7% to $1.12 in afternoon trading. Earlier in the day, Rite Aid was advancing as much over 5%. Walgreen is slipping 1.5% to $32.42, while CVS is off 0.2% to $34.01.
-- Reported by Jeanine Poggi in New York.
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