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Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM) today reported diluted earnings per common share (EPS) for the quarter ended March 31, 2014 (1Q14) of $2.35, compared to diluted earnings per common share (EPS) of $2.95 for the quarter ended March 31, 2013 (1Q13). Results from 1Q13 included $0.41 per diluted common share of benefit from the settlement of contract claims with the Department of Defense related to previously-disclosed litigation and the absence of the impact of sequestration for the company’s Medicare business.
The company reaffirmed its estimate for EPS for the year ending December 31, 2014 (FY14) to be in the range of $7.25 to $7.75. The company’s 2014 EPS estimate now reflects a continuing expectation of improved performance from the company’s Medicare Advantage, commercial group and government businesses, higher than expected specialty drug costs for treatment of Hepatitis C, additional planned investments in clinical initiatives and lower investment spending and startup expenses for the company’s health care exchange business.
“Our first quarter results reflect our success in growing membership and timely engagement with our members, assisting them with their health conditions, especially chronic conditions. Our progress with our clinical programs has provided members stable benefits and improving quality ratings,” said Bruce D. Broussard, President and Chief Executive Officer of Humana. “We expect the strength of our integrated care delivery strategy combined with expanding enrollment opportunities, especially in our newer offerings, to position the company for further growth in a challenging Medicare funding environment.”
During 1Q14, the company executed share repurchases of $11 million, or 100,000 of its outstanding shares, at an average price of $113.44 per share under a previous share repurchase authorization. In April 2014, the Board of Directors replaced its previous share repurchase authorization (of which approximately $569 million remained unused) with a new $1 billion repurchase authorization with an expiration date of June 30, 2016.