Molina's operating loss balloons to $269M in Q4: 5 things to know

Molina Healthcare widened its operating loss in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2017 as the company continues its restructuring.

Here are five things to know about the insurer's results for the three months ended Dec. 31, 2017.

1. Molina's operating loss widened to $269 million in the fourth quarter of 2017, compared to an operating loss of $6 million in the same period a year prior.

2. Joe Zubretsky, president and CEO of Molina, said the results "are emblematic of the significant transition Molina is undertaking. The disappointment of contract losses and related goodwill charges, continued restructuring costs, and catch up adjustments to unacceptable marketplace results are legacies of the past. Looking forward, the core business results showed improvement quarter over quarter, and we took steps to strengthen the quality of the balance sheet, all of which serve as a solid platform to achieve our margin recovery and sustainability plan we outlined for investors last month. Medical cost control, administrative cost discipline, and capital strength remain at the fore of our plan."

3. Molina also said the federal government's decision to cut cost-sharing reduction payments in October set the company back $73 million in the fourth quarter. The cost-sharing reductions help offset the cost of providing health insurance to low-income Americans on the ACA exchanges. Molina said it is legally entitled to the federal payments and "will pursue all available means to collect them."

4. Molina saw revenue grow 9.1 percent in the three months ended Dec. 31 to $4.9 billion, compared to $4.5 billion reported in the same period a year prior. At the same time, the insurer saw expenses climb 14.9 percent to $5.2 billion, compared to $4.5 billion recorded in the fourth quarter of 2016.

5. Molina ended the fourth quarter of 2017 with a net loss of $262 million, compared to a net loss of $47 million reported in the fourth quarter of 2016. For the full 2017 fiscal year, Molina recorded a $512 million net loss, compared to net income of $52 million for the full 2016 fiscal year.

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How Aetna, Anthem, Cigna, Humana and UnitedHealth fared in Q4

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