Hot stocks to watch: There are two giants reported their respective third quarter results. U.S. fourth-largest health insurer, CIGNA Group (CI) must be very happy, the company on Thursday reported a third-quarter profit more than doubled, far exceeding market expectations, partially thanks to the acquisition of HealthSpring, coupled with last year same period’s results were dragged down by discontinued operations.
The company grew the reporting quarter net profit from a year ago’s $183 million, or 67 cents per share to $466 million, or $ 1.61 per share. Excluding one-time items, the company posted adjusted net profit $1.69 per share, much higher than analysts’ estimates of $1.37 per share, according to the survey of FactSet. The company grew revenue by 31% to $7.36 billion, higher than the average analyst forecast of $7.34 billion.
CIGNA also raised the expectation on full-year adjusted earnings per share from the previous $5.25 to $5.60 to a range between $5.70 and $5.90, higher than the average analyst forecast of $5.56. CI stock price gained 2.25% this morning with 305,101 shares moving.
Another one of the two hot stocks, seems to be downhearted. Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer (PFE) reported its third-quarter revenue below Wall Street analysts’ average expectation, primarily because its imporant product, cholesterol lowering drug, Lipitor, lost patent protection.
As the U.S. largest drug maker, Pfizer pointed published that third-quarter earnings amounted to $3.21 billion, or 43 cents per share. Pfizer posted earnings of $3.74 billion, or $48 cents per share for the same period last year when Pfizer recognized $1.3 billion revenue from the sale of Capsugel business.
Excluding special items, Pfizer’s third quarter earnings was 53 cents per share. According to the survey by Thomson Reuters, market analysts on average had expected the third quarter earnings to be 53 cents per share.
Worldwide sales substantially dropped 16% to $13.98 billion during the reporting quarter. Wall Street analysts had on average expected Pfizer’s third-quarter revenues to be $14.64 billion.