) has put together three straight quarters of positive EPS
surprises, and will have a chance to do it again when it reports
third-quarter results next week. Shares of this Internet-based
health insurance provider have been enjoying a favorable run of
late, and even hit a 52-week high of $20.36 on October 8. This
Zacks #2 Rank (Buy) also announced a new share repurchase program
Upcoming 3Q Release
eHealth is scheduled to report its third quarter results on October
25. The Zacks Consensus Estimate is calling for a loss of 1 cent on
expected revenue of $37 million.
On September 10, eHealth's board of directors approved a new share
repurchase program, authorizing the company to buy back shares
worth $30 million.
On July 26, eHealth reported second-quarter 2012 operating earnings
per share of 10 cents, beating the Zacks Consensus Estimate by
100%. It was also way above the year-ago result of 1 cent. Total
revenue dropped 2% year over year to $35.5 million, though it
exceeded the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 4%.
Commission revenue improved 2% while Medicare revenue shot up 130%.
Total approved members in the second quarter increased 19% year
over year. Total operating costs and expenses slipped 0.1% year
over year to $31.3 million.
Guidance and Earnings Estimates Revisions
eHealth projects total revenue between $152 million and $158
million for 2012. Earnings before Interest, Tax, Depreciation and
Amortization (EBITDA) is expected at $21 million to $26 million.
The company sees adjusted earnings for 2012 at 56 cents to 66 cents
For 2012, the Zacks Consensus Estimate is currently pegged at 36
cents, an increase of 16.1% over the last 90 days. The Zacks
Consensus Estimate for 2013 rose 11.9% to 47 cents over the same
time frame, representing a year-over-year increase of 31.2%.
Market Performance & Technicals
Following the announcement of the share buyback program, the
company's shares moved above its 50-day moving average as well as
the 200-day moving average. Also, shares have increased
approximately 17.3% since eHealth released its second quarter
Volume is strong, averaging roughly 138,700 daily. The year-to-date
return for the stock came in at 36.7%, compared to the Nasdaq's
return of 17.1%.
eHealth Inc. is a leading online based provider of health insurance
for individuals, families and small businesses in the United
States. It has a market capitalization of $396.65 million.
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