UnitedHealth Group, the health-insurance giant, said Tuesday that it has received a formal order of investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission related to stock-options backdating. The order was issued Dec. 19, after regulators first notified the company in April of an informal inquiry. UnitedHealth said in its filing that it is cooperating with the investigation. In October, the company fired its longtime chief executive, Dr. William W. McGuire, as well as its general counsel and a raft of other top executives in connection with the timing of options doled out to employees.
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