Insurer UnitedHealth's 4Q profit jumps 21 percent

AP News
Posted: Jan 19, 2012 11:54 AM
Insurer UnitedHealth's 4Q profit jumps 21 percent

UnitedHealth Group says its fourth-quarter net income jumped 21 percent, trumping Wall Street expectations, as the insurer saw enrollment and revenue gains.

The company, based in Minnetonka, Minn., says it earned $1.26 billion, or $1.17 per share, in the three months that ended Dec. 31. That's up from $1.04 billion, or 94 cents per share, in the same quarter last year.

Revenue grew 8 percent to $25.92 billion. Enrollment rose 5 percent to 34.6 million people.

Analysts had forecast earnings of $1.03 per share on $25.64 billion in revenue.

UnitedHealth is the largest health insurer based on revenue and the first to report earnings every quarter. Many see the company as a bellwether for managed-care companies.