Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of health-care company Centene Corporation (NYSE: CNC) jumped as much as 10% today after it released earnings.

So what: Revenue of $1.22 billion was just slightly below expectations, but earnings and outlook got investors really excited. First-quarter earnings per share were $0.46, beating estimates by four cents, and the company expects 2011 earnings to be between $2.03 and $2.13, a three-cent increase from the previous range.

Now what: Quarterly earnings were helped by a lower health benefits ratio and increased membership. The strong earnings report helped push Centene to a new 52-week high in trading today. I think the clarity of this quarter will help push shares higher as details of the health-care shakeout become clearer to investors.

Interested in more info on Centene Corporation? Add it to your watchlist.

Fool contributor Travis Hoium does not have a position in any company mentioned. You can follow Travis on Twitter at @FlushDrawFool, check out his personal stock holdings or follow his CAPS picks at TMFFlushDraw.

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