UnitedHealth Maintains Outlook, Braces for COVID-19 Impact

UnitedHealth Group didn’t see much of an earnings impact from the COVID-19 pandemic in the first quarter of 2020, but the effects will crystallize in future quarters. Such was the overarching message of the company’s April 15 earnings release and conference call, which focused as much on how UnitedHealth has mobilized to respond to the pandemic as it did on the firm’s financial performance.

“While it feels awkward to be talking about earnings outlook at this moment,” UnitedHealth CEO David Wichmann said during his prepared remarks, “we are maintaining our 2020 earnings per share outlook established at our investor conference,” which was $16.25 to $16.55 per share on an adjusted basis. Wichmann added that for UnitedHealth, the financial effects of the pandemic — which at press time had claimed more than 33,000 American lives — will become clearer in the months to come.

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Leslie Small

Leslie has been reporting and editing in various journalism roles for nearly a decade. Most recently, she was the senior editor of FierceHealthPayer, an e-newsletter covering the health insurance industry. A graduate of Penn State University, she previously served in editing roles at newspapers in Pennsylvania, Virginia and Colorado.

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