(By Balaseshan) WellPoint Inc. (NYSE: WLP) expects full year 2012 earnings to exceed its previous forecast primarily due to the favorable settlement of a tax matter during the fourth quarter of 2012, the health insurer said in a regulatory filing.
Excluding the tax settlement, closing costs related to the Amerigroup acquisition and certain items, full year 2012 earnings is anticipated to be near the high end or slightly above the prior outlook range of $7.30 to $7.40 per share, while Street predicts $7.46 per share.
WellPoint is still completing its year-end 2012 accounting close. Its preliminary analysis indicates that 2012 GAAP earnings to exceed its previous guidance range of $7.37 to $7.47 per share.
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For the fiscal 2013, the Indianapolis, Indiana-based WellPoint continues to expect relatively stable adjusted profit and a lower share count due to capital deployment.
WellPoint expects adjusted earnings per share to grow moderately in 2013, including integration costs related to the Amerigroup acquisition in the 2013 outlook.
WellPoint is a health benefit company in terms of medical membership in the United States, serving 34.3 million medical members through its affiliated health plans and a total of 65.3 million individuals through all subsidiaries as of December 31, 2011.
WLP closed Monday's regular session up 0.76% at $59.74. The stock has been trading between $52.51 and $74.73 for the past 52 weeks.