Cost controls helped Community Health Systems exceed second-quarter profit expectations despite a drop in admissions.
Franklin-based CHS earned $70.1 million during the quarter, an 18 percent increase from last year. Per diluted share, profits were 74 cents, a penny better than analysts' predictions. On the flip side, revenues rose about 5 percent to $3.17 billion, about $50 million short of what the Street had expected.
The company's same-store occupancy rate during the quarter slipped to 49.4 percent, 170 basis points below the year-ago number and more than three percentage points lower than in the first quarter. Avondale Partners analyst Kemp Dolliver said the volume softness – same-store admissions fell more than 2 percent – was "the only remarkable development in an otherwise solid quarter."
Chairman, President and CEO Wayne Smith said his team "delivered another solid operating performance" in keeping costs in check and driving revenue growth. CHS' bad-debt load remained constant in the quarter at 12 percent of revenues and Smith raised the floor of the company's full-year earnings guidance from $2.85 per share to $2.90.
Shares of Community (Ticker: CYH) rose 0.7 percent after hours Wednesday, recovering part of the day's losses. Year to date, they're down about 13 percent.
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