Health insurer Anthem bumps quarterly dividend up almost 43 percent after beating 4Q forecasts

Anthem is hiking the quarterly dividend it pays shareholders nearly 43 percent after reporting fourth-quarter results that topped Wall Street expectations.

The nation's second-largest health insurer says it will begin offering a payout of 62.5 cents per share, up from its previous dividend of 43.75 cents per share.

The Indianapolis company also says its net income more than tripled in the fourth quarter to $506.7 million, or $1.80 per share. Adjusted earnings totaled $1.73 per share, which beat average analyst expectations by a penny.

Anthem Inc. runs Blue Cross-Blue Shield coverage in several states. The insurer changed its name late last year from WellPoint to reflect a brand that is more familiar to consumers in part because it sells coverage on the health care overhaul's public insurance exchanges.