Investors are Watching These Major Healthcare Providers After Earnings

Wellpoint Inc. (NYSE:WLP) reported its results for the third quarter. Net income for Wellpoint Inc. fell to $683.2 million ($1.90 per share) vs. $739.1 million ($1.84 per share) a year earlier. This is a decline of 7.6% from the year earlier quarter. Revenue rose 3.8% to $15.16 billion from the year earlier quarter. WLP reported adjusted net income of $1.77 per share. By that measure, the company beat the mean estimate of $1.66 per share. Analysts were expecting revenue of $15.12 billion.

“We added 169,000 medical members during the third quarter and have now grown by more than one million members on a year-to-date basis, while reducing selling, general and administrative expenses by $185 million, or nearly three percent. Our ability to add new customers while controlling costs demonstrates our execution and emphasis on creating a more affordable operating model for our customers,” said Angela F. Braly, chair, president and chief executive officer. “We are also investing strategically in innovative services and capabilities designed to enhance future growth and improve health care costs and quality for our members. We expect that our focus on creating the best health care value in the industry will continue to drive success in 2012 and beyond.”

Competitors to Watch: CIGNA Corporation (NYSE:CI), Humana Inc. (NYSE:HUM), UnitedHealth Group Inc. (NYSE:UNH), Aetna Inc. (NYSE:AET), Universal American Corp. (NYSE:UAM), Health Net, Inc. (NYSE:HNT), HealthSpring, Inc (NYSE:HS), Molina Healthcare, Inc. (NYSE:MOH), Coventry Health Care, Inc. (NYSE:CVH), and Triple-S Management Corp. (NYSE:GTS).

Hospira Inc. (NYSE:HSP) reported a drop to a loss in the third quarter driven by higher costs.  Reported a loss of $88.9 million (54 cents per diluted share) in the quarter. The drug delivery company had net income of $71.4 million or 42 cents per share in the year earlier quarter. Revenue rose 2.9% to $976.7 million from the year earlier quarter. HSP reported adjusted net income of 66 cents per share. By that measure, the company fell in line with the mean estimate of 66 cents per share. It fell short of the average revenue estimate of $1.04 billion.

“As we indicated in our Oct. Eighteen press release, despite the continued contribution of recently launched products to revenue growth, our third-quarter results were significantly impacted by developments related to our quality-improvement initiatives,” said F. Michael Ball, chief executive officer. “Addressing these issues is Hospira’s top priority, and our organization is committed to full resolution. I remain confident that Hospira will emerge from this process a stronger, more competitive global company that is optimally positioned to serve the needs of our customers and patients, and deliver strong value to our shareholders.”

Competitors to Watch: Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd (NASDAQ:TEVA), Mylan Inc. (NASDAQ:MYL), Akorn, Inc. (NASDAQ:AKRX), Novartis AG (NYSE:NVS), Baxter International Inc. (NYSE:BAX), Watson Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NYSE:WPI), Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE), DURECT Corporation (NASDAQ:DRRX), ICU Medical, Incorporated (NASDAQ:ICUI), and Allergan, Inc. (NYSE:AGN).

Medco Health Solutions Inc. (NYSE:MHS) reported its results for the third quarter. Net income for Medco Health Solutions Inc. fell to $355.4 million (90 cents per share) vs. $371.5 million (85 cents per share) a year earlier. This is a decline of 4.3% from the year earlier quarter. Revenue rose 4.1% to $16.98 billion from the year earlier quarter. MHS reported adjusted net income of $1.07 per share. By that measure, the company beat the mean estimate of $1.05 per share. Analysts were expecting revenue of $17.06 billion.

“Medco experienced a strong third-quarter, including record EPS even when including merger-related expenses associated with the pending merger with Express Scripts. Our gross margins recovered to a healthy 6.9 percent, and our EBITDA per adjusted script achieved a record $3.43 excluding merger-related expenses. Along with this positive financial performance, our clients and members saved approximately $700 million from higher generic utilization. Looking forward to 2012, the guidance we provided demonstrates expectations for continued strength building upon what is turning out to be a very successful 2011. The generic wave for 2012 is forecasted to be strong, and our clients and members are expected to save approximately $6.5 billion in 2012 from increased generic utilization, which also has the effect of lowering our revenues due to the significant price difference in generics compared to brand-name drugs,” said David B. Snow Jr., chairman and chief executive officer of Medco.

Competitors to Watch: Express Scripts, Inc. (NASDAQ:ESRX), BioScrip Inc. (NASDAQ:BIOS), Catalyst Health Solutions, Inc. (NASDAQ:CHSI), UnitedHealth Group Inc. (NYSE:UNH), CVS Caremark Corporation (NYSE:CVS), Walgreen Company (NYSE:WAG), Aetna Inc. (NYSE:AET), Magellan Health Services, Inc. (NASDAQ:MGLN), SXC Health Solutions Corp. (NASDAQ:SXCI), and Birner Dental Mgmt. Services (NASDAQ:BDMS).