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CVS Health (CVS) earnings Q4 2019

A pedestrian walks through the parking lot of a CVS Health Corp. store in Oakland, California, Aug. 2, 2019.

Michael Short | Bloomberg | Getty Images

CVS Health reported Wednesday fiscal fourth-quarter earnings and revenue that beat Wall Street’s expectations.

Here’s what the company reported compared with what Wall Street was expecting, based on a survey of analysts by Refinitiv:

  • Adjusted EPS:  $1.73 per share vs. $1.68 per share
  • Revenue: $66.9 billion vs. $63.97 billion expected

“As we work to transform the way health care is delivered to millions of Americans, we are driving continued business performance and generating positive momentum across the enterprise,” CVS President and CEO Larry Merlo said in a statement. “As a result of the significant progress we made in 2019, and meeting or exceeding our expectations for the year, we raised our outlook for 2020.”

The drugstore chain expects 2020 earnings between $7.04 per share and $7.17 per share.

On an unadjusted basis, CVS earned $1.75 billion, or $1.33 a share, during the three months ended Dec. 31. That compares with a loss of $419 million, or a loss of 37 cents a share, during the same quarter in 2018. Operating income increased by 1.3% to $3.8 billion.

The stock was down more than 1% in pre-market trading.

Same-store sales rose 3.2% during the quarter, with sales in its pharmacy unit up 4.1%, CVS reported. Health care benefits, which includes its Medicare Part D plans, 

Shares of CVS Health are down half a percent this year, but have risen more than 13% over the last 12 months. Last year, the drugstore chain laid out its plan for growth over the next few years as it integrates Aetna, the health insurer it acquired for $70 billion.

A federal judge signed off on CVS’ $69 billion merger with health insurer Aetna in September, an acquisition that’s starting to show some strain. Aetna’s former CEO Mark Bertolini told the Wall Street Journal that he was being pushed off of the CVS board. The company announced his departure Feb. 3, saying it was reducing the size of the board.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.

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