WellCare more than doubles net income in Q3

Shares of WellCare, a Florida-based Medicaid and Medicare managed care plan, hit a record high Tuesday as the payer more than doubled its net income in the third quarter of fiscal year 2017, Reuters reports.  

WellCare stocks rose to a high of $188.83 Tuesday, after the payer reported revenue of $4.4 billion in the third quarter ended Sept. 30, up from $3.6 billion reported in the same period a year prior. The payer saw revenues across its Medicaid and Medicare businesses increase year over year during the third quarter.

The revenue boost comes as WellCare began administering Medicaid benefits to roughly 498,000 Georgia residents in July. In addition, the payer won a four-year contract to manage Illinois' Medicaid program Oct. 19. In terms of Medicare, WellCare's membership rose 45 percent in the third quarter of this year compared to the same period last year, due in part to its $800 million acquisition of Universal American.

Ken Burdick, WellCare's CEO, said, "As a result of our strong third quarter performance and outlook for the remainder of this year, we are raising our full-year 2017 adjusted earnings per diluted share guidance to a range of $8.25 to $8.40," up from $6.75 to $6.95 per diluted share.

While the insurer saw expenses rise year over year to $4.2 billion, up from $3.4 billion in the third quarter a year prior, expenses did not offset revenue gains. WellCare ended the third quarter of this year with net income of $171.6 million, more than double the net income of $68.6 million it reported in the same period in 2016.  

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