Humana says third-quarter profit fell on investments, drug costs

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Health insurer Humana said on Friday that third-quarter profit fell as it invested in the Obamacare health insurance exchanges and state-based health contracts, and paid for costly hepatitis C treatments.

For 2015, the company said it expected earnings of $8.50 to $9.00 a share, up from its lowered expectations of $7.40 to $7.60 for 2014. In 2015 it will benefit from less spending on those state-based health contracts and as its Medicare profitability improves, it said.

Analysts were expecting earnings of $8.83 per share for 2015 and $7.75 for 2014, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

The company reported net profit of $290 million, or $1.85 per share, compared with $368 million, or $2.31 per share, a year earlier.