UnitedHealth crushes earnings in its first quarter since dumping most of its Obamacare business

UnitedHealth Group posted stronger than expected earnings on Tuesday in the first quarter without the bulk of its Affordable Care Act compatible individual health insurance business.

The insurance giant earned $US2.37 per share, higher than the $US2.17 expected by analysts. Additionally, the company also generated $US48.7 billion in revenue, higher than the $US48.3 billion that analysts were anticipating.

UnitedHealth also raised its guidance for both profit and revenue for the year. The insurer now sees full year EPS of $US9.65 to $US9.85 per share, higher than the expected $US9.51 per share.

This was also the first quarter that UnitedHealth rolled back its ACA exchange-based plans, which the company said slowed revenue growth and the number of lives covered.

“UnitedHealthcare’s withdrawal from ACA Individual markets, combined with the 2017 health insurance tax deferral, reduced consolidated first quarter 2017 revenues by approximately $US1.6 billion and lowered the revenue growth rate by 4.1 per cent,” said the release from UnitedHealth.

Additionally, the company said that it dropped 765,000 people through the ACA market, partially offsetting the addition of 1.5 million customers through other lines of business.

Following the release, UnitedHealth’s stock was up 2.25% in pre-market trading to $US170.95 as of 6:35 a.m. ET.

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