Shares of WellCare Health Plans lost as much as 70% during intraday trading today, in light of federal and state agents raiding the company's offices in Tampa, Florida.
A U.S. Attorney for Florida yesterday announced the raid, stating the FBI would partner with U.S. Health and Human Services and the Florida Attorney General's Medicaid fraud-control unit to execute a federal search warrant for WellCare's offices. Officials did not go into specifics regarding what they're looking for.
Though details are unknown regarding the raid, Bear Stearns associate John Rex noted the significance of the Florida Medicaid fraud unit, considering WellCare specializes in Medicaid and Medicare programs. In fact, the government programs make up around 20% to 25% of the company's earnings.
WCG executives haven't divulged much, merely reiterating it would cooperate with authorities in their investigation.
WellCare has more than doubled in price since October 2006, consistently outpacing its 20-month moving average by up to 30 points. Today, WCG checks in with a Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.6; only 2% of the readings this year have been lower.
Shares today have taken a nosedive, marking a new annual low of 33 before regaining slightly. Currently, shares are trading at $44, down 61.83%.