UnitedHealth said second-quarter earnings rose 5.5%, however, stock tumble on news of the company’s tough rate environment report.
The Wall Street Journal: UnitedHealth Posts Higher Profit, Lifts Outlook
UnitedHealth Group Inc.’s second-quarter earnings rose 5.5% amid rising membership in government-based health plans and signs that patients are still using health-care services sparingly following the recession. The company—the biggest managed-care firm in the U.S. by revenue and membership—raised its full-year earnings outlook as the quarterly results exceeded expectations (Kamp, 7/19).
Los Angeles Times: UnitedHealth Reports Solid Second-Quarter Results But Shares Dip
UnitedHealth Group Inc. reported solid second-quarter results and raised its full-year profit outlook, but shares slipped in midday trading after the company projected a tough rate environment for its Medicare and Medicaid plans (Terhune, 7/19).
Reuters: UnitedHealth Sees Pressures Even As Profit Beats
Insurer UnitedHealth Group Inc on Thursday signaled that pressures on its health plans would not ease anytime soon as the government reins in reimbursement for Medicaid and Medicare and tough competition persists among plans serving employers. … It was the first report from a health insurer since the U.S. Supreme Court late last month upheld President Barack Obama’s healthcare law, which more tightly regulates the industry and adds new fees while also adding millions of potential new customers by expanding coverage to the uninsured (Krauskopf, 7/19).
Bloomberg: UnitedHealth CEO Says Profit Pressures Squeezing Plans
UnitedHealth Group Inc., the biggest U.S. health insurer, declined after Chief Executive Officer Stephen Hemsley said profit margins are being squeezed in its Medicare and Medicaid plans. … While UnitedHealth raised its 2012 profit forecast, the company is still coping with “minimal” rate increases in Medicare, the U.S.-backed plan for the elderly and disabled, Hemsley told analysts today on a conference call. He said the Minnetonka, Minnesota-based insurer may also consider pulling out of Medicaid markets in states where rates “aren’t sustainable” (Nussbaum, 7/19).
Market Watch: UnitedHealth Q2 Net Rose 5.5%; Lifts Year View
UnitedHealth Group Inc.’s second-quarter earnings rose 5.5% as the health insurer’s revenue improved at its UnitedHealthcare insurance business and Optum, its information- and technology-based health-services business. … UnitedHealth, the biggest managed-care company by revenue and membership, is the industry’s first to report quarterly results, making its view of health-cost trends and patient traffic an important barometer (Warner, 7/19).
In related news –
The New York Times’ Deal Book: After Health Care Ruling, Centene Is Cast As Takeover Target
Since the Supreme Court upheld President Obama’s transformative health care law last month, Wall Street has been wondering whether the decision would set off a fresh round of consolidation in the industry. One analyst says the Centene Corporation, a health care services company focused on Medicaid, could be a takeover target (Morrissey, 7/19).
UnitedHealth: Higher Earnings Despite Pressuers On Medicare, Medicaid Business
Kaiser Health News – Medicare