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CVS Revenues Top $67B, CEO Merlo to Retire in 2021

Analysis  |  By Jack O'Brien  
   November 06, 2020

Forward looking, CVS raised its full year guidance for diluted EPS, in a range of $5.60 to $5.70.

CVS Health's total revenues topped $67 billion during Q3, though its net income fell $310 million year-over-year, according to the company's latest earnings report released Friday morning.

CVS' operating income grew by $321 million year-over-year, but its adjusted operating income fell $325 million over the same period.

Similarly, the company, based in Woonsocket, Rhode Island, saw its diluted earnings per share (EPS) and adjusted EPS fall by $0.24 and $0.18, respectively, over the same period.

Related: CVS Revenues Increase 3%, Raises Guidance Amid COVID Outbreak

The company also announced that CEO Larry Merlo would step down from his role on February 1, 2021. Merlo will be replaced by Karen Lynch, Executive Vice President of CVS Health and President of Aetna.

"I am deeply honored to have the opportunity to succeed Larry and lead CVS Health on the next phase of our important journey to meet America's healthcare needs," Lynch said in a statement.

Forward looking, the company raised its full year guidance for diluted EPS, in a range of $5.60 to $5.70; adjusted EPS, in a range of $7.35 to $7.45; and cash flow from operations, in a range of $12.75 billion to $13.25 billion.

C-suite Perspective:

"Our strong third quarter results demonstrate continued execution of our long-term strategic plan that is transforming the way health care is delivered. As an integrated health services provider, we’re developing holistic and innovative solutions that meet the needs of our customers in the community, in the home or in the palm of their hand," Merlo said in a statement. "Our comprehensive pandemic response shows the power of a diverse and agile enterprise. We’ve opened more than 4,000 COVID-19 test sites across the country since March, and have administered over six million tests. We’re helping businesses and universities safely reopen and we were recently selected to administer COVID-19 vaccinations in long-term care facilities. We’ll continue to play a vital role in our nation’s recovery thanks to the tireless efforts of our nearly 300,000 employees."

One of the most significant developments for the company during Q3 was the announcement that the Trump administration reached a deal with CVS and Walgreens to administer a potential coronavirus vaccine to seniors in long-term care facilities.

Related: Trump Administration Announces Deal with CVS and Walgreens to Administer Coronavirus Vaccine to Seniors in Long-term Care

By segment, CVS' pharmacy services reported total quarterly revenues of $35.71 billion, down $307 million year-over-year. However, total pharmacy claims processed rose by 18.7 million during the quarter.

The company's retail/LTC segment recorded total revenues of $22.7 billion, up $1.2 billion year-over-year. The segment's operating income rose $188 million over the same period but adjusted operating income fell $104 million.

Related: A Prescription for What Ails CVS, Walgreens

The healthcare benefits segment's total revenues increased by over $1.5 billion year-over-year, though both operating and adjusted operating incomes fell by $87 million and $343 million, respectively.

Related: CVS to Hire 15K to Prepare for Flu and COVID-19 Spike

For complete financial information, review CVS Health's filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Editor's note: This story was updated on November 9.

Jack O'Brien is the Content Team Lead and Finance Editor at HealthLeaders, an HCPro brand.

Photo credit: Northbrook - Circa June 2019: CVS Health location. CVS Health is a retail pharmacy and pharmacy benefit manager III / Editorial credit: Jonathan Weiss /

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