The 10-second takeaway
For the quarter ended Dec. 31 (Q4), UnitedHealth Group beat slightly on revenues and met expectations on earnings per share.
Compared to the prior-year quarter, revenue expanded and GAAP earnings per share increased slightly.
Margins dropped across the board.
UnitedHealth Group booked revenue of $28.77 billion. The 14 analysts polled by S&P Capital IQ looked for revenue of $28.25 billion on the same basis. GAAP reported sales were 11% higher than the prior-year quarter's $25.92 billion.
Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Dollar amounts in millions. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.
EPS came in at $1.20. The 22 earnings estimates compiled by S&P Capital IQ averaged $1.19 per share. GAAP EPS of $1.20 for Q4 were 2.6% higher than the prior-year quarter's $1.17 per share.
Source: S&P Capital IQ. Quarterly periods. Non-GAAP figures may vary to maintain comparability with estimates.
For the quarter, gross margin was 27.7%, 40 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter. Operating margin was 7.3%, 70 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter. Net margin was 4.3%, 60 basis points worse than the prior-year quarter.
Next quarter's average estimate for revenue is $29.83 billion. On the bottom line, the average EPS estimate is $1.32.
Next year's average estimate for revenue is $122.83 billion. The average EPS estimate is $5.55.
The stock has a five-star rating (out of five) at Motley Fool CAPS, with 3,322 members out of 3,475 rating the stock outperform, and 153 members rating it underperform. Among 1,023 CAPS All-Star picks (recommendations by the highest-ranked CAPS members), 1,001 give UnitedHealth Group a green thumbs-up, and 22 give it a red thumbs-down.
Of Wall Street recommendations tracked by S&P Capital IQ, the average opinion on UnitedHealth Group is outperform, with an average price target of $66.50.
Is UnitedHealth Group the best health care stock for you? Learn how to maximize your investment income and "Secure Your Future With 9 Rock-Solid Dividend Stocks," including one above-average health care logistics company. Click here for instant access to this free report.
- Add UnitedHealth Group to My Watchlist.
Seth Jayson had no position in any company mentioned here at the time of publication. You can view his stock holdings here. He is co-advisor of Motley Fool Hidden Gems, which provides new small-cap ideas every month, backed by a real-money portfolio. The Motley Fool recommends UnitedHealth Group and recommends the following options:Long Jan 2014 $40 Calls on UnitedHealth Group. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.