Amedisys 4Q profit drops sharply
Home health provider Amedisys Inc. posted a sharply lower fourth-quarter profit that missed analysts' forecasts because of a pinch by lower Medicare reimbursement rates and new federal regulations. Today's report sent Amedisys shares down by 4% in morning trading. For the quarter ending in December, the Baton Rouge-based company earned $4.3 million, or 15 cents per share. By contrast, the company earned $22.1 million, or 79 cents per share, in the fourth quarter of 2010. Revenue also dropped to $370.7 million, from $388.7 million the year previous. Analysts surveyed by FactSet had expected per-share earnings of 28 cents and revenue of $371.1 million. Amedisys CEO William Borne says new restrictions resulted in tighter margins. This year Amedisys says it expects revenue ranging from $1.475 billion to $1.525 billion, and earnings per share between 95 cents to $1.10. Amedisys lost $382.5 million in 2011, or $13.09 per share, on revenue of $1.47 billion. That included a $579 million non-cash write-off for a goodwill impairment charge. In 2010, the company earned $112.6 million, or $4.39 per share, on revenue of $1.6 billion. As of 2 p.m., Amedisys shares were down 72 cents—or about 5.5%—to $12.21. The shares have seen a 52-week range of $9.12 to $37.24.
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