Cigna profits fall despite revenue, membership growth

Cigna reported Thursday that its second quarter earnings fell 3 percent, but its revenue and membership continue to grow as a result of acquiring Medicare business HealthSpring last year.

The Bloomfield, Conn., insurer earned $380 million in the second quarter, compared to $391 million during the same time last year. Despite the drop, earnings were still higher than Wall Street expectations, reported the Associated Press.

"Earnings (were) ahead of consensus expectations on solid healthcare results, including stable utilization trends in Medicare Advantage, continued strong international revenue growth and better-than-expected group disability and life earnings," Jason Gurda, analyst for consulting company Leerink Swann, said in a research note.

Cigna's revenue rose 35 percent from $5.5 billion last year to $7.46 billion, primarily driven by its $3.8 billion acquisition of HealthSpring, which raised premiums and fees 52 percent and allowed Cigna to enter the lucrative Medicare Advantage business, Reuters reported.  

"We continue to be pleased with the contributions from HealthSpring and the effective execution of our global growth strategy, which continues to yield strong revenue and earnings contributions from each of our ongoing businesses," Cigna CEO David Cordani said.

Meanwhile, enrollment in Cigna's health plans grew 9.7 percent to 13.8 million members, up from 12.6 million last year. And its dental plans increased from 10.8 million to 11.2 million members this second quarter, according to the Hartford Courant.

To learn more:
- read the Associated Press article
- see the Reuters article
- check out the Hartford Courant article