BUSINESS Pfizer sales miss as breast cancer drug disappoints

BUSINESS

Pfizer sales miss as breast cancer drug disappoints

Reuters

21:54, May 01, 2018

Leading U.S. drugmaker Pfizer Inc (PFE.N) racked up its biggest miss on sales in a year in the first quarter, hurt by lower-than-expected sales of blockbuster breast cancer drug Ibrance and arthritis drug Xeljanz.

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The Pfizer logo is seen at their world headquarters in New York April 28, 2014. (File Photo: Reuters)

Pfizer shares, which have struggled to benefit from the surge in stock market prices since Donald Trump’s election in 2016, dipped just over 1 percent in response to the results.

The company said that Ibrance had raked in sales of $933 million in the first quarter, up 37.4 percent from a year earlier but missing analysts’ estimates of $956.6 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

That likely reflects strong competition from Novartis’ (NOVN.S) Kisqali and Lilly’s (LLY.N) recently approved Verzenio.

Xeljanz, which is approved to treat rheumatoid arthritis and psoriatic arthritis, posted sales of $326 million, well below $398.5 million expected by analysts.

Pfizer, which is exploring options for a consumer healthcare business that some estimates value at $20 billion, said it expected to make a decision in 2018 on any sale of a business which includes Centrum vitamins and Advil painkillers.

Quarterly profit topped Wall Street estimates on stronger-than-expected sales of pneumonia vaccine Prevnar and the company also reaffirmed its 2018 forecast.

Net profit rose to $3.56 billion, or 59 cents per share, in the latest quarter ended April 1 from $3.12 billion, or 51 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding items, the company earned 77 cents per share, topping estimates of 74 cents.

Total revenue rose 1 percent to $12.91 billion, while analysts were expecting $13.13 billion.

The company holds a conference call with analysts at 10 a.m. eastern time to discuss the results.

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