AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESanta Anita opens winter meet Saturday with loaded card “We know that entering 2005, there were many questions about Health Net,” said the company president and chief executive officer, Jay Gellert. “Now, as we look back at 2005, it’s very gratifying to say we believe we answered the questions, erased doubt and positioned the company for future success.” The company offered guidance on that success Wednesday, saying it expects full-year earnings of $2.90 to $3.10, with 10 cents to 12 cents in charges for expensing stock options. While total enrollment slipped 1.3 percent in the fourth quarter and 6.1 percent for the year, and it is expected to continue to slide moderately in the first quarter of 2006, Gellert predicted that the trend would reverse in the latter half of next year. The investment community hardly rallied around the news, with shares trading down $1.04 to close at $48.33 after release of the news. Still, Citigroup analyst Charles Boorady saw some potential in the stock as he evaluated its various operating groups in a note to investors. “While Health Net has been the lowest-rated stock by the Street in our covered universe for more than a year,” he wrote, “we continue to see great value in the California, Medicare and Tricare franchises and believe management will continue on the current path toward better hospital relations, price-driven commercial expansion and strong organic growth in Medicare Advantage.” WOODLAND HILLS – Health Net Inc. rounded out its turnaround year on a positive note Thursday, reporting that its fourth-quarter results reversed a year-ago loss. For the final three months of 2005, the managed-care company earned $76.7 million, 65 cents per share, on sales of $2.95 billion. A year ago, swamped with charges for settlements with medical providers, Health Net lost $85.6 million, 77 cents per share, off revenue of $2.88 billion. For the full year, revenue hit $11.9 billion, up from $11.65 billion in 2004. Net income rose to $229.8 million, $1.99 per share, up from $42.6 million, or 38 cents per share, the prior year. The current results beat Thomson/First Call analysts’ expectations of 64 cents per share, though revenue came in slightly under the predicted $3.04 billion. Brent Hopkins, (818) 713-3738 firstname.lastname@example.org 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!