Healthcare Business

How Anthem Fell Short on Earnings and Membership

Anthem Inc. (NYSE: ANTM) released its fourth-quarter earnings report before the markets opened Wednesday. The company had $1.14 in earnings per share (EPS) on $20.02 billion in revenue, versus consensus estimates of $1.20 in EPS on $19.90 billion in revenue. The same period from the previous year had $1.73 in EPS on $18.78 billion in revenue.

Medical enrollment totaled approximately 38.6 million members at December 31, 2015, an increase of approximately 1.1 million members, or 2.9%, from 37.5 million at December 31, 2014. However, during the fourth quarter medical enrollment decreased by 102,000 members, or 0.3%, sequentially. The decrease reflected enrollment losses in the National and Individual businesses, partially offset by gains in the Medicaid business.

The company did not repurchase any shares of its common stock during the quarter due to the pending acquisition of Cigna.

During the fourth quarter of 2015, the Biogen paid a quarterly dividend of $0.625 per share, representing a distribution of cash totaling $163.1 million.

In terms of guidance, Biogen expects EPS to be greater than $10.35 in 2016, versus consensus estimates that call for $10.88 in EPS on $82.98 billion in revenue. Apart from this the company expects the following:

  • Medical membership is expected to be in the range of 38.8 million to 39.0 million.
  • Fully insured membership is expected to be in the range of 14.6 million to 14.7 million.
  • Self-funded membership is expected to be in the range of 24.2 million to 24.3 million.

Joseph Swedish, chairman, president and CEO of Anthem, commented:

Our solid fourth quarter results reflected a continuation of our positive operating momentum as we ended the year serving 38.6 million members across our Commercial and Government markets. As we look ahead to 2016, we remain well-positioned to continue advancing affordability, quality and choice for our members. We believe our strategy will be enhanced with the pending acquisition of Cigna, which we continue to expect should close in the second half of 2016,

Shares of Anthem closed Tuesday down 0.7% at $175.94, with a consensus analyst price target of $175.94 and a 52-week trading range of $126.25 to $173.59.