WebMD 2Q profit rises on investigation settlement

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NEW YORK (AP) — Online health information provider WebMD Health Corp. said its second-quarter net income jumped as revenue rose on its public website, and it settled a Justice Department investigation.

The company earned $21.6 million, or 36 cents per share, up from $7.7 million, or 13 cents per share, during the same period last year.

One-time items added to the profits. It recorded a $7.4 million from settling a Justice Department investigation into a business it divested in 2006, and an investment gain of $1 million. Without special items, it would have earned $13.2 million, or 22 cents per share, in the most recent quarter, up from $10.7 million, or 18 cents per share, during the same period last year.

Revenue rose 15.2 percent to $141.4 million, from $122.7 million a year earlier.

Analysts surveyed by FactSet had been expecting adjusted profit of 23 cents per share on revenue of $141.2 million.

Advertising and sponsorships on its public website rose 20 percent to $121.1 million. Traffic grew 30 percent to an average of 104.8 million unique visitors per month.

Revenue from customized health websites fell 8 percent to $20.3 million. The company had 120 large employers and health plans using those services during the quarter, down from 129 a year ago and 137 two years ago.

WebMD shares were up 62 cents, or 2 percent, to $32.77 in aftermarket trading following the release of the earnings report. They had closed the regular trading session down $1.82, or 5.4 percent, to $32.15.