Friday, July 20, 2018
Business

Shares of Community Health Systems, parent of St. Petersburg's Bayfront Health, drop 50 percent in one day

The hospital chain parent of Bayfront Health, one of St. Petersburg's oldest healthcare providers, saw its stock drop nearly 50 percent Thursday after the company offered a disappointing preview of its upcoming earnings numbers.

Shares fell 49.65 percent by the close of Thursday's market, resulting in Community Health's market value shrinking in one day by more than half a billion dollars. The Tennessee-based company, one of the nation's largest hospital operators with 158 hospitals in 22 states, saw 12.4 percent fewer admissions in the most recent third quarter compared to the year-ago period.

Community Health also faces increasing pressure on pricing as more individuals switch to managed-care plans, which result in reduced cost burdens for ratepayers but lower reimbursements for hospitals.

The company's official quarterly earnings will be released Nov. 2.

The company's dire financial situation has been widely reported. Analysts expect the company eventually must be broken up into pieces small enough for smaller hospital companies to buy what they want.

"Community Health Systems shares face a clearly challenging situation," warned Credit Suisse analyst Scott Fidel.

Previous coverage:For sale? The latest hospital chain that owns St. Petersburg's Bayfront Health needs a bailout

Bayfront Health in St. Petersburg is the flagship of seven area hospitals that all carry the Bayfront Health brand. Those hospitals are in smaller cities that range from Brooksville and Dade City to the north of Tampa Bay to Punta Gorda and Port Charlotte to the south.

In 2013, an independent Bayfront sold itself in 2013 to the Health Management Associates hospital chain in Naples, thinking it would be more secure as part of a larger corporation. But Health Management was already struggling, and the larger Community Health Systems bought the Naples firm in the same year.

Now Community Health is in increasing financial trouble. And Bayfront Health once again finds it is along on a bumpy search for yet another new owner.

Comments
Open office plans are as bad as you thought

Open office plans are as bad as you thought

A cubicle-free workplace without private offices is supposed to force employees to collaborate. To have them talk more face-to-face. To get them off instant messenger and spontaneously brainstroming about new ideas.But a recent study by two researche...
Published: 07/21/18
Officials speak out against demolition plans for historic Jordan Park section

Officials speak out against demolition plans for historic Jordan Park section

ST. PETERSBURG — Pinellas County School board chair Rene Flowers was fired up Friday. She talked about growing up in Jordan Park, the city’s first public housing project and a sentimental and historic marker of St. Petersburg’s African-American commu...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Florida is still paying SunPass contractor, even after officials said they would stop

Florida is still paying SunPass contractor, even after officials said they would stop

Florida has not stopped paying the SunPass contractor responsible for the tolling system’s outage, even after transportation officials said the state would suspend all payments.In a letter on Monday, FDOT secretary Mike Dew said the state would not p...
Updated: 12 hours ago
Florida among the top 3 states with the most income inequality

Florida among the top 3 states with the most income inequality

Florida is one of three states in the nation with the biggest income gap between the very rich and everyone else.In 2015, a family in the top 1 percent nationally had an average income of more than $1.3 million — or 26.3 times as much as the $50,107 ...
Published: 07/20/18
Tampa International Airport ranked in top 10 for defense against cyber threats

Tampa International Airport ranked in top 10 for defense against cyber threats

TAMPA — Tampa International Airport was ranked this week as the 10th safest U.S. airport to go online without being hacked, but the ranking is not only about the place, but also about how savvy its travelers are.The data security firm Coronet ranked ...
Published: 07/20/18
When suicide threats come calling: ‘I try to make a connection.’

When suicide threats come calling: ‘I try to make a connection.’

TAMPA — At first glance, it’s a typical office with more than a dozen cubicles under florescent lights. The operators wear headsets and stare into computer screens, some tinkering with handheld toys, others browsing Facebook or chatting with colleagu...
Published: 07/20/18

State record of $321 million in unclaimed property back to residents and businesses

More than $321 million was returned to Florida residents and businesses from the state’s unclaimed property in the past fiscal year.Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis took office in July 2017 and said this year’s total broke last year’s rec...
Published: 07/20/18
Trump ready to hit all Chinese imports with tariffs

Trump ready to hit all Chinese imports with tariffs

Associated PressPresident Donald Trump has indicated that he’s willing to hit every product imported from China with tariffs, sending U.S. markets sliding before the opening bell Friday. In a taped interview with the business channel CNBC, Trump said...
Published: 07/20/18
Tampa Bay and Florida businesses expect tariffs to drive prices up

Tampa Bay and Florida businesses expect tariffs to drive prices up

TAMPA — Tariffs imposed by the Trump administration and other countries are beginning to push up prices and depress demand in spots around the Tampa Bay area and Florida, business executives say."We’ve definitely seen that the tariffs have increased ...
Published: 07/20/18
Get this: Bank of the Ozarks is the country’s largest construction lender

Get this: Bank of the Ozarks is the country’s largest construction lender

This surprised me: Little ole Bank of the Ozarks is the country’s largest construction lender, loaning out more to the industry than financial heavyweight Wells Fargo and Bank of America.Those factoids were part of a lengthy profile of the bank pub...
Published: 07/20/18