LHC Group Inc., a Lafayette-based home health provider, reported its fourth-quarter profit grew to $5.5 million, or 32 cents per share, compared to $5.0 million, or 29 cents per share, a year ago.
For the year, LHC’s earnings slipped to $21.8 million, or $1.26 per share, compared to $22.3 million, or $1.30 per share, in 2013.
Those results fell short of Wall Street’s expectations. Stock analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research forecast earnings of 33 cents per share for the quarter and $1.28 for the year.
However, the fourth-quarter results included $2.8 million in costs related to closing underperforming locations, a write-down of the carrying value of an acquired trade name, severance pay and lease terminations. Those costs were partially offset by a $657,000 tax benefit.
Without those losses, LHC would have earned $7.7 million, or 45 cents per share, in the fourth quarter. For the year, LHC would have earned $24 million, or $1.39 per share.
LHC said it expects 2015 earnings per share in the range of $1.50 to $1.70.