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a massive tie up in the insurance industry health insurer aetna agreeing friday to buy small arrival humana in a cash and stock deal worth thirty seven billion dollars if the biggest merger in the ever consolidating insurance sector an amazing feat since the previous record holder at the twenty eight billion dollar deal between eighth and chop was just announced a few days ago a beefed up aetna will serve over thirty three million people the third largest behind anthem the deal so big it could trigger scrutiny from regulators , the industry seeing deal after deal as players look to capitalize on the perceived pot of gold built up by the affordable care act , the bigger the sure the bigger the leverage in negotiating prices and improving doctor networks as a health care law brings more paying patients and government subsidies