NEW YORK — The Dow Jones industrial average is dumping Cool Whip for co-pays.
The Dow, perhaps the most widely known barometer of the U.S. stock market, announced Friday that it would boot Kraft Foods to make room for UnitedHealth Group, the insurance company.
The change takes effect Sept. 24. S&P Dow Jones Indices, which manages the average, said it was dropping Kraft because it is about to become a much smaller company after spinning off its North American grocery business.
Kraft, which also makes Cheez Whiz and the familiar blue-box macaroni and cheese, had a short shelf life on the Dow. It was added during the financial crisis in September 2008, replacing crippled insurer American International Group. UnitedHealth Group was added because of health care’s growing importance in the U.S. economy, said David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee.
Most recent changes to the 30 stocks in the Dow Jones industrial average:
• June 8, 2009: Travelers and Cisco Systems replace Citigroup and General Motors.
• Sept. 22, 2008: Kraft Foods replaces American International Group.
• Feb. 19, 2008: Bank of America and Chevron replace Altria Group and Honeywell International.