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Health insurer Elevance raises annual profit forecast

(Reuters) – Health insurer Elevance Health Inc on Wednesday raised its annual profit forecast, after reporting a rise in quarterly earnings helped by strong performance of its unit that sells government-backed health plans.

The upbeat forecast comes after larger rival UnitedHealth Group Inc raised its annual profit forecast for the third straight quarter last week.

Health insurers have been able to soften the blow from costs related to COVID-19 testing and treatment, as elective procedures recover slowly and coronavirus cases decline.

Elevance, which was previously known as Anthem, now expects annual adjusted earnings to be higher than $28.95 per share, compared with its prior forecast of more than $28.70 per share.

Elevance said shareholders’ net income rose to $1.62 billion, or $6.68 per share, in the three months ended Sept. 30, from $1.51 billion, or $6.13 per share, a year earlier.

(Reporting by Mrinalika Roy and Raghav Mahobe in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)


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