UnitedHealth tops 2Q expectations, hikes 2017 forecast

FILE - This Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2012, file photo, shows part of the UnitedHealth Group, Inc. campus in Minnetonka, Minn. UnitedHealth Group Inc. reports

UnitedHealth Group's second-quarter earnings jumped 30 percent, pushed in part by growth in the company's Optum business, and the nation's largest insurer raised its 2017 forecast again.

The company, based just outside Minneapolis, said Tuesday that it now expects adjusted earnings this year of between $9.75 and $9.90 per share, up from $9.65 to $9.85.

Analysts polled by FactSet were expecting earnings of $9.80 per share this year.

In the quarter, UnitedHealth earnings climbed to $2.28 billion, with adjusted earnings totaling $2.46 per share. Total revenue rose nearly 8 percent to $50.05 billion.

Analysts expected earnings of $2.38 per share on $50.03 billion in revenue.

Health insurance is UnitedHealth's main business, but it has focused on growing its Optum segment, which provides pharmacy benefits management and technology services.