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UnitedHealth Beats Earnings Estimates Amid Retreat From ACA Exchanges

Shares of UnitedHealth Group (UNH - Get Report) ticked higher on Tuesday morning as momentum within its Optum business proved to be among various things to outweigh the pressure facing the U.S. health insurer's exchange business in recent weeks.

The Minnetonka, Minn., company posted first-quarter earnings per share of $1.81 before the opening bell Tuesday, exceeding the Street's consensus of $1.72. Revenue during the quarter ended March 31 came in at about $44.53 billion, north of analysts' expectations of $44.34 billion.

"UNH's 1Q2016 should put to bed most concerns that investors may have had," FBR senior vice president Steven Halper wrote in a Tuesday morning note. "2015 was a difficult year for UNH given the headwinds from individual exchange products. ... The company continues to be well diversified across different insurance niches and outside of health insurance with its Optum segment, which reported another strong quarter."

UnitedHealth's first-quarter results come as the company continues to quit offering...


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