Health Management Shares Plunge on Profit Outlook

Tuesday, 09 Apr 2013 06:32 PM

 

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Shares of Health Management Associates Inc. fell sharply in extended trading Tuesday after the operator of acute-care hospitals reduced the high end of its 2013 earnings forecast.

Health Management, based in Naples, Florida, fell 11 percent to $11.20 after closing at $12.59. The stock has gained 78 percent in the past 12 months.

The company now estimates annual profit from continuing operations will be 86 cents a share to 95 cents a share. Its previous forecast, made Jan. 13, was 86 cents to $1.01. Preliminary results show adjusted admissions fell 5.7 percent in the first quarter, Health Management said Tuesday in a statement, estimating annual admissions in 2013 would decline 3 percent to break even.

The first quarter is typically the busiest of the year, so the hospital operator hired extra staff to cope with an expected influx, Gary Newsome, Health Management’s chief executive officer, said in the statement. This year, the anticipated increase didn’t happen, he said.

Health Management operated 70 hospitals in 15 states as of Dec. 31, according to a regulatory filing.

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