Earnings, Outlook Boost Humana

The company's shares climb 6% after second-quarter earnings exceed estimates.
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Health care insurer


(HUM) - Get Report

saw its shares climb in morning trading after the company posted an increase in second-quarter earnings, aided by higher operating margins in its commercial business.

In the quarter ended June 30, the company earned $69.3 million, or 43 cents a share, compared with $45.4 million, or 27 cents a share, last year. On an adjusted basis, the company earned $59.2 million, or 37 cents a share. Analysts were expecting 29 cents a share.

Revenue was $3.03 billion, up from $2.83 billion a year ago. The latest quarter's results included a gain of $10.1 million, or 6 cents a share, from the sale of a venture capital investment.

Shares of Humana were climbing $1.02, or 6%, to $17.85 in recent

New York Stock Exchange


"Humana's reputation in the commercial segment as an innovator in solutions for employers is not only growing, it is leading to an increase in sales activity. That activity, combined with consistent pricing discipline, has helped drive the improved results for our second quarter," said Michael B. McCallister, Humana's chief executive.

The company also said its Medicare+Choice membership totaled 324,200 at June 30, a decrease of 29,900 members from last year.

Humana projected third-quarter earnings of 37 cents to 38 cents a share. For the full year, Humana forecast a profit of $1.39 to $1.42 a share. On an adjusted basis, the company expects $1.44 to $1.47 a share for 2003.

Analysts are currently looking for $1.40 a share. The company earned $1.20 a share in the prior-year period.

Revenue is estimated to exceed $12 billion in 2003, up from $11.3 billion last year, the company said. Analysts are calling for $12.1 billion. Additionally, Humana predicted 2004 earnings of $1.55 to $1.65 a share.