Dividend stock Aetna (NYSE:AET) had a blowout first quarter, with strong operating revenue up 47% to almost $14 billion. That top-line growth helped push operating earnings per share to $1.98 from $1.56 in last year's first quarter. En route to shattering analyst expectations, Aetna reported new members from a variety of sources -- 60,000 from Medicaid, 130,000 from Medicare Advantage, 130,000 from private exchanges, and 230,000 from the public exchanges.
Aetna did a better job ensuring that revenue from those members flowed through to the bottom line as well, with a medical benefit ratio (the proportion of premium revenue paid out in medical costs) improving to 80%, with the government medical benefit ratio improving three percentage points to 85%.
In this video from Friday's Market Checkup, Motley Fool health care analysts Michael Douglass and David Williamson cover the other major takeaways from the earnings report.