Earnings Preview: WellPoint details 4Q Wednesday
|By The Associated Press|
WHAT TO WATCH FOR: Signs that one of the nation's largest health insurers is stabilizing its business after a rough year in which it cut its annual earnings forecast and enrollment slipped during the first three quarters.
WellPoint, based in
Investors will want more details on how WellPoint is integrating the
Investors also will look for any updates on the company's search for a new leader. CEO
WellPoint shares fell 8 percent last year, while the Standard & Poor's 500 index rose more than 13 percent.
But there were some positive signals for the insurer's business in last year's July-September quarter, when it trumped analyst expectations and recorded its first quarterly increase in earnings _ compared with the previous year _ since the first quarter of 2011.
WellPoint has said it expects 2013 earnings to be "relatively stable" with 2012. The insurer has said it will focus this year on preparing for 2014, when the health care overhaul will expand coverage and provide subsidies or tax credits to help millions of people buy insurance.
WellPoint plans to spend as much as
WHY IT MATTERS: WellPoint runs
WHAT'S EXPECTED: Analysts expect, on average, earnings of
2011 QUARTER: WellPoint's net income plunged 39 percent due mostly to a
Overall, WellPoint earned
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