J&J raises 2016 forecast; shares on track for record high
Johnson & Johnson (JNJ.N) on Tuesday raised its full-year 2016 sales and earnings forecasts and reported quarterly results that beat estimates, helped by strength in its prescription drugs business.
Shares of the diversified healthcare products maker rose 1.3 percent at $124.80 on the New York Stock Exchange after touching a new record high of $125.75.
Strong demand for the company’s Imbruvica cancer drug and Xarelto blood thinner boosted pharmaceutical sales, which jumped 8.9 percent to $8.7 billion in the quarter. Sales of Remicade, J&J’s biggest product, rose 6.7 percent to $1.78 billion.
It also posted solid growth in cancer medications Darzalex and Zytiga and diabetes treatment Invokana.
J&J, which is the first major U.S. drugmaker to announce quarterly earnings, raised its 2016 sales forecast to a range of $71.5 billion to $72.2 billion, from $71.2 billion to $71.9 billion previously.
The maker of a variety of products from Tylenol to Band-Aid bandages to Acuvue contact lenses also increased its adjusted profit range to $6.63 to $6.73 per share, from $6.53 to $6.68.
Investors have been concerned about potential competition to its Remicade autoimmune drug in the United States. Inflectra, a cheaper version developed by Celltrion Inc (068270.KQ) and Pfizer Inc (PFE.N), was approved by U.S. regulators earlier this year, but a protracted patent battle between J&J and Celltrion has delayed its introduction.
New Jersey-based J&J is also restructuring its struggling medical device business to focus on areas such as artificial knees and devices for trauma surgery.
Worldwide device sales inched up about 1 percent to $6.4 billion in the quarter, buoyed by higher demand for its advanced surgery products.
Total revenue rose 3.9 percent to $18.5 billion.
Net earnings fell to $3.997 billion, or $1.43 per share, from $4.516 billion, or $1.61 per share.
Excluding special items, J&J earned $1.74 per share.
Analysts, on average, expected profit of $1.68 per share on revenue of $17.98 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Up to Monday’s close, J&J’s stock had gained about 20 percent this year.
(Reporting by Natalie Grover in Bengaluru; Additional reporting by Susan Kelly in Chicago; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Jeffrey Benkoe)
Source: Reuters Health