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By Charley Grant
This article is being republished as part of our daily reproduction of WSJ.com articles that also appeared in the U.S. print edition of The Wall Street Journal (April 17, 2019).
Talk about a tough crowd.
Health-insurance giant UnitedHealth Group, one of the star performers of the stock market until this year, had its usual round of good news for investors in its first-quarter earnings results. Adjusted net earnings of $3.73 a share grew by 23% from a year earlier and topped analyst estimates, and the company increased its full-year profit forecast.
Investors, however, reacted as though they got a surprise medical bill. Shares closed down 4% on Tuesday. That was the worst earnings-related reaction since a brief selloff in 2015, according to FactSet. But that selloff was in reaction to disappointing guidance, not to a clean report.
UnitedHealth shares are down nearly 10% so far in 2019, after a decade of nearly uninterrupted gains.
Investors can successfully predict future earnings and cash flows, but there is no predicting the mood of Mr. Market.
Write to Charley Grant at email@example.com
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
April 17, 2019 02:47 ET (06:47 GMT)
Copyright (c) 2019 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.