Here are three things you must know at midday on Wednesday, Dec. 6:
1. -- Walmart Stores Inc. (WMT) is changing its name to ... Walmart Inc.
Why the change by the world's largest retailer?
The move mirrors the company's journey to rebrand itself as more than just a bricks-and-mortar retailer as it turns to digital sales to combat Amazon Inc. (AMZN) .
"Our customers know us as Walmart and today they shop with us not only in our stores but online and with our app as well," said Doug McMillon, Walmart's president and CEO. "While our legal name is used in a limited number of places, we felt it was best to have a name that was consistent with the idea that you can shop us however you like as a customer."
2. -- A big deal in the healthcare space was announced Wednesday: UnitedHealth Group Inc. (UNH) said it would buy DaVita Inc.'s (DVA) medical unit and combine it with its Optum division as it expands into ambulatory care delivery systems.
UnitedHealth will pay just under $5 billion for the DaVita unit.
Optum will pair with DaVita in a deal that adds to its 1.7 million patient base and 300 medical clinics that feature primary and specialist care. OptumCare has around 80 health plans that work through 30,000 affiliated physicians. The deal is valued and $4.9 billion and will be paid in cash.
DaVita shares gained more than 11% midday Wednesday. UnitedHealth rose 0.5%.
The deal is just the latest in unusual healthcare combinations. CVS Health Corp. CVS this week said it would pay $69 billion to buy Aetna Inc. (AET) in an effort to offer more complete healthcare solutions to consumers.
3. -- Shares of Square Inc. (SQ) were rising more than 1% Wednesday after the company announced its Cash App would allow more users to buy and sell bitcoin.
CEO Jack Dorsey -- who's also the CEO of Twitter Inc. -- tweeted on Tuesday, "Turning on Bitcoin for a lot more cash app folks right now."
And speaking of bitcoin: The cryptocurrency smashed through $12,000 for the first time on Tuesday, just a week after breaking through $10,000. At last check, bitcoin was trading at $12,587.
What's more astounding is that bitcoin was trading below $1,000 at the start of the year.
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