Cigna projects $2B in operating profits this year

Ahead of investor and analyst meetings Cigna plans to attend over the next several weeks, the Bloomfield, Conn.-based payer disclosed its full-year operating profits will surpass $2 billion, according to a Monday regulatory filing.

Amid legal proceedings over Cigna's pending $54 billion acquisition by Indianapolis-based Anthem, the Securities and Exchange Commission filing may be a ploy by Cigna to keep its independent operations in the eyes of Wall Street, employer clients and customers, reports Forbes. Should the Justice Department block the deal, Cigna CEO David Cordani said in July the payer would have "$5 billion in deployable cash," including a $1.85 billion breakup fee from Anthem.

Since trial began Nov. 21, Mr. Cordani and Anthem CEO Joseph Swedish have both testified for their deal against the DOJ's antitrust lawsuit, with the payers arguing their combined forces would lower consumer costs and spread Cigna's innovation efforts across a broad national base. However, alleged tensions between Cigna and Anthem executives have led the DOJ to challenge the insurers' efficiency as one company, as each accused the other in September of breaching their acquisition contract. When lawyers questioned the executives about the relationship between the two companies during trial Nov. 22, the executives asked the courtroom be closed due to the confidential material they planned to discuss.  

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