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OFFON

UNITEDHEALTH GROUP

(UNH)
  Report
Real-time Estimate Quote. Real-time Estimate Cboe BZX - 09/17 09:31:21 am
416.79 USD   -0.01%
09/10UNITEDHEALTH GROUP : Ex-dividend day for
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09/09OPTUM : Health Education Launches LGBTQ+ Education Program for Providers
BU
09/09UNITEDHEALTH : Press Release
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SummaryMost relevantAll NewsAnalyst Reco.Other languagesPress ReleasesOfficial PublicationsSector newsMarketScreener Strategies

UnitedHealth profit beats expectations, shares rise

01/15/2019 | 11:47am EDT
Traders work at the post where UnitedHealth Group is traded on the floor of the NYSE in New York

(Reuters) - UnitedHealth Group Inc, the largest U.S. health insurer, beat Wall Street estimates for fourth-quarter profit on Tuesday, driven largely by growth in its Optum services business, including its pharmacy benefits unit.

UnitedHealth maintained its previous profit forecast for 2019 adjusted earnings of $14.40 to $14.70 per share, and said higher than expected medical costs in the fourth quarter were limited to states for which it manages their Medicaid benefits, the government program for low income Americans.

"I don't want to overplay Medicaid here. We have a short-term issue that will take us a little bit of time to work our way out of," Chief Executive David Wichmann told analysts on a conference call to discuss the results.

That eased Wall Street worries that medical services utilization might be on the rise broadly for insurers, and helped push UnitedHealth and rival insurer shares higher, Evercore ISI analyst Michael Newshel said. The company is the first to report earnings for the sector.

UnitedHealth shares rose 2.8 percent, or $6.91, to $254.97. Anthem Inc gained 2 percent to $260.16 and Cigna Corp rose 1.6 percent to $195.14.

"Usually United reporting has an influence on the sector, and they did have a good quarter, so that could be why the sector is up today. We thought there were a lot of bullish points," Piper Jaffray analyst Sarah James said.

Analysts said the company's medical care ratio - the percentage of premiums paid for medical services - of 82.2 percent in the quarter fell short of their estimates.

However, the company earned $3.28 per share excluding items, exceeding analysts' average expectations by 7 cents, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

Total revenue rose about 12 percent to $58.42 billion in the quarter, topping Wall Street forecasts of $58.01 billion.

UnitedHealth reported $27.56 billion in revenue from its Optum unit, a 13 percent rise from last year.

Optum is UnitedHealth's fastest-growing unit, but is set to face tough competition this year after rivals Cigna and Aetna Inc combined with Optum's two largest rivals, Express Scripts Holding and CVS Health Corp, respectively.

Optum benefited from growth in its care delivery, behavioral health and health financial services, the company said.

UnitedHealth's main business selling health insurance plans brought in $46.23 billion in sales, an 11.1 percent rise from a year earlier.

Net earnings attributable to shareholders fell 16 percent from a year ago to $3.04 billion, or $3.10 per share, related to changes in U.S. corporate tax laws.

(Reporting by Tamara Mathias in Bengaluru and Caroline Humer in New York; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta and Bill Berkrot)

By Tamara Mathias and Caroline Humer


© Reuters 2019
Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
AMP LIMITED 0.00% 1 End-of-day quote.-35.90%
ANTHEM, INC. 0.11% 374.94 Delayed Quote.16.64%
CIGNA CORPORATION -0.51% 205.52 Delayed Quote.-0.77%
CVS HEALTH CORPORATION -0.22% 85.35 Delayed Quote.24.96%
EVERCORE INC. -0.46% 139.29 Delayed Quote.27.04%
JUST GROUP PLC 0.71% 92.8 Delayed Quote.31.83%
UNITEDHEALTH GROUP -0.16% 416.84 Delayed Quote.19.06%
WILL GROUP, INC. 0.15% 1322 End-of-day quote.31.41%
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Analyst Recommendations on UNITEDHEALTH GROUP
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Financials (USD)
Sales 2021 284 B - -
Net income 2021 17 037 M - -
Net Debt 2021 24 310 M - -
P/E ratio 2021 23,3x
Yield 2021 1,29%
Capitalization 393 B 393 B -
EV / Sales 2021 1,47x
EV / Sales 2022 1,35x
Nbr of Employees 330 000
Free-Float 99,4%
Chart UNITEDHEALTH GROUP
Duration : Period :
UnitedHealth Group Technical Analysis Chart | UNH | US91324P1021 | MarketScreener
Technical analysis trends UNITEDHEALTH GROUP
Short TermMid-TermLong Term
TrendsNeutralBullishBullish
Income Statement Evolution
Consensus
Sell
Buy
Mean consensus BUY
Number of Analysts 26
Last Close Price 416,84 $
Average target price 458,92 $
Spread / Average Target 10,1%
EPS Revisions
Managers and Directors
Andrew Philip Witty Chief Executive Officer & Director
Dirk C. McMahon President & Chief Operating Officer
John Franklin Rex Chief Financial Officer & Executive Vice President
Stephen J. Hemsley Chairman
Richard J. Migliori Chief Medical Officer & EVP-Medical Affairs
Sector and Competitors
1st jan.Capi. (M$)
UNITEDHEALTH GROUP19.06%393 046
ANTHEM, INC.16.64%91 416
CIGNA CORPORATION-0.77%69 899
HUMANA INC.-2.26%51 295
CENTENE CORPORATION2.60%35 910
MOLINA HEALTHCARE, INC.26.78%15 746