Hospital execs book big profits on heels of Q2 numbers

A quintet of local hospital executives have cashed in to the tune of $22 million on the recent run-up in their companies' shares.

Four top officials at HCA Holdings and the CFO of LifePoint Hospitals last week exercised a large amount of stock options on the heels of their employers reporting strong Q2 results that were aided by health insurance reforms (LifePoint's report is here, HCA's here) and lifted their stocks to all-time highs. Their sales are the latest in what has been a steady stream in 2014 of Nashville-area insiders lightening their holdings as the market has churned higher.

Here are the numbers from last week:

• Chief Ethics Officer Alan Yuspeh on Wednesday exercised more than 153,000 options that would have expired between next January and early 2017. By selling the resulting shares, he booked a net gain of more than $8.9 million.

• Chief Development Officer Joe Sowell was right with Yuspeh on Wednesday, exercising 100,000 options that would have expired all the way out in 2020 and then selling the resulting. When all was done, Sowell — a former partner at Waller who joined HCA in 2009 — had booked a profit of more than $5.8 million.

• Senior Vice President of Human Resources John Steele fattened his bank account by more than $1.8 million after exercising 30,000 options and selling the resulting shares.

• Senior VP of Finance David Anderson also was a seller, exercising about 22,500 options and unloading the resulting stock. His take on those transactions: $1.5 million.

• Over at LifePoint, CFO Leif Murphy is the only senior exec to have cashed in some chips of late. On Thursday, he exercised 100,000 stock options and sold the resulting shares for a profit of almost $3.6 million.