Centene posts $535M loss in second quarter of 2021

Centene Corporation posted a $535 million loss in the second quarter of 2021, down from its $1.2 billion haul in the prior-year quarter.

Despite the loss, the company is the black for the first half of the year, according to its earnings report released Tuesday morning, with $164 million in profit through the first two quarters. By comparison, Centene boasted $1.3 billion in profit for the first half of 2020.

On a per-share basis, that represents a loss of 92 cents. The results fell short of Wall Street analysts’ predictions, according to Zacks Investment Research, which projected earnings of $1.41 per share.

Centene did beat the Street on revenue for the quarter, however, reporting $31 billion. That’s up from Q2 2020 revenues of $27.7 billion.

RELATED: Centene CEO Neidorff raked in nearly $25M last year. Take a look what other insurance execs earned

CEO Michael Neidorff called the results “solid” in a statement, saying that the company is still tracking the potential impacts of COVID-19.

“We have seen near-term pressures in our Marketplace business where utilization continues to trend above baseline, and we are monitoring COVID variants closely as the pandemic continues to evolve,” he said. “Our scale and diversification provide a solid foundation to execute through this environment as we focus on implementing various initiatives to deliver on our stated margin goals.”

As of June 30, Centene’s membership sat at 25.4 million, representing an increase of 800,000, or 3%, compared to the first half of 2020.

As a result of the performance, Centene maintained its earnings guidance for the year of between $5.05 and $5.35 per share. It did raise its revenue guidance to between $123.3 billion and $125.3 billion.

Of note in the quarter, the insurer reached settlement agreements in two states over alleged overpayment in Medicaid. Centene will pay $88 million to Ohio and $55 million to Mississippi to resolve the allegations against a pharmacy benefit manger subsidiary, Envolve Pharmacy Solutions.

In the settlement, Centene claims no fault. The insurer said it has set aside $1.1 billion to resolve similar claims in other states.

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