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Topping The Tape: HMOs

HMO stocks traded higher as some Dems predicted health care reform could pass as soon as Christmas Eve.

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs told reporters that the president believes that the legislative process has progressed to the point where it's no longer a question of if – but when.

In fact, President Obama says he will stay in Washington and not leave for his Hawaii vacation if a bill will indeed land on his desk Thursday.

“My attitude is that if they're making these sacrifices to provide health care to all Americans then the least I can do is to be around and provide them any encouragement and last-minute help where necessary," Obama said Tuesday.

Democrats pushed the legislation over procedural hurdles in the Senate on Tuesday and no last-minute complications were expected to derail a Thursday vote.

House-Senate bargainers would then have to complete a compromise that could be sent to Obama for his signature.

Remaining differences between the two chambers include how to pay for the measure and how to restrict federally financed abortions. Gibbs said the president is confident those issues will be resolved.

What’s the trade?

If you’re long HMO stocks such as UNH , it’s time to get out, counsels Guy Adami. This is the catalyst you’ve been waiting for.

For me the best health care plays are generic drug makers such as Teva , counsels Pete Najarian.


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Trader disclosure: On December 22nd, 2009, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s Fast Money were owned by the Fast Money traders; Adami Owns (INTC), (MSFT), (NUE), (BTU), (AGU), (C), (GS); Pete Najarian Owns (CLF), Is Short (CLF) Calls; Pete Najarian Owns (MS), Is Short (MS) Calls; Pete Najarian Owns (MRVL); Pete Najarian Owns (STX) Calls; Pete Najarian Owns (UUP) Call Spread

For Joe Terranova
Terranova Works For (VRTS)
Terranova Is Chief Market Strategist Of Virtus Investment Partners, Ltd.
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (CLB)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (DLR)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (EXR)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (IGE)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLY)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (DBV)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (UA)

For Jon Najarian
Jon Najarian Owns (RYL)
Jon Najarian Owns (KBH)

For Eric Beder
Beder Owns (ANF)
Beder Owns (TGT)
Brean Murray, Carret & Co. Is A Market Maker In (BEBE), (CACH), (TRLG), (WTSLA), (URBN)

For Peter Schiff
Schiff Owns Gold

Add'l Disclosures:
Finerman's Firm Is Short (IJR)
Finerman's Firm Is Short (MDY)
Finerman's Firm Is Short (SPY)
Finerman's Firm Is Short (IWM)
Finerman Owns (AAPL)
Finerman's Firm Owns (BAC) Preferred, (BAC), (BAC) Call Spread
Finerman Owns (BAC) Preferred, (BAC)
Finerman's Firm Owns (BDX)
Finerman's Firm Owns (BCR)
Finerman's Firm Owns (MSFT)
Finerman's Firm Owns (PLCE)
Finerman's Firm Is Short (TLT)
Finerman's Firm And Finerman Own (WFC) Preferred
Finerman's Firm Owns (WMT)
Pete Najarian Owns (CAT) Calls


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