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Wednesday, July 20, 2011

UnitedHealth Group's Earnings Call

I participated in UnitedHealth Group's earnings call today.  My conclusions:
  • Optum will continue to make well focused acquisitions;
  • UNH will continue to keep quiet about its lobbying efforts to shape the post-PPACA landscape;
  • Public budget crises will make the Medicaid managed-care business look much less attractive than it has been; and
  • UNH and (most) Wall Street analysts continue to ignore the likelihood of PPACA’s defeat, either through the Supreme Court or the election of a new president in 2012.
Read my entire column at Forbes.com: The Apothecary.

2 comments:

Frank Timmins said...

John, no doubt UHC is keeping quiet about its lobbying efforts "post" PPACA, probably because it hopes there to not be a "post" PPACA.

I'm not sure about Wall Street in general but you can be sure That UHC is not addressing a world without PPACA because they have so much invested in it already. Besides, whatever replaces PPACA is sure to be less profitable for the BUCAs.

John R. Graham said...

I hear you, but I think I've been too tough on the carriers. That is, I think they'll be able to pivot when the time to repeal and replace comes.

If their investments in Health Benefits Exchanges mean that they are more prepared for the individual market to be the market of first resort, rather than a residual market, they may weaken their resistance to tax reform that gives individuals, not employers, the tax benefit for owning health insurance.

I'm just an optimist by nature.