CVS Health maintained momentum in the third quarter, as the retailer beat analyst estimates and saw retail comparable sales gains.
Third quarter income from continuing operations was $1.53 billion versus $1.39 billion, while diluted earnings per share from continuing operations was $1.17 versus $1.36 in the year-prior period.
With one-time considerations excluded, adjusted company income from continuing operations was $2.41 billion, or $1.84 per share, versus $1.77 billion, or $1.73 per share, in the quarter a year earlier. CVS topped a MarketBeat-published analyst adjusted earnings per share consensus estimate by seven cents.
Total revenues were $64.81 billion versus $47.49 billion in the quarter a year before. Revenue growth advanced primarily due to the contribution of Aetna, acquired in 2018, as well as increased volume and brand name drug price inflation in both the pharmacy services and retail/LTC segments. Operating income was $2.93 billion versus $2.57 billion.
Retailer/LTC segment revenues were $21.47 billion in the quarter versus $20.86 billion while comparable sales increased 3.6% for the company in the period year over year and 0.6% for the front store segment, which includes general merchandise such as housewares. Operating income was $1.1 billion versus $1.49 billion.
Larry Merlo, CVS president and CEO, said, “Our third quarter results build on the positive momentum we have seen across the company since the beginning of the year. All of our core businesses performed in line with or above expectations, reflecting strong operational execution. As a result, we delivered strong growth and generated robust operating cash flow, which enabled us to continue to de-lever while returning capital to our shareholders.”