Johnson & Johnson Q4 profit rises 14%, but revenue drops

Health care products maker Johnson & Johnson's jnj fourth-quarter profit rose 14%, topping Wall Street forecasts, but the company expects weaker results in 2009.

NJ&J earned $2.71 billion, or 97 cents a share, up from $2.37 billion, or 82 cents a share, during the same period a year prior. Revenue fell 4.9% to $15.18 billion.

Excluding charges and gains, the company said it earned 94 cents a share. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected profit of 92 cents a share on revenue of $15.93 billion. The one-time items included a $225 million after-tax gain from litigation settlements.

"Fourth quarter sales missed across all divisions, both international and domestic," Leerink Swann analyst Rick Wise said in a research report.

Another U.S. drugmaker, Forest Laboratories frx, posted a 38% decline in quarterly profit Tuesday on charges for licensing new medicines, but shares rose because operating results far exceeded analyst targets thanks to lower-than-expected spending.

Looking ahead, J&J said it expects 2009 profit of $4.45 to $4.55 a share. Analysts expect profit of about $4.61 a share.

However, Johnson & Johnson noted that the analysts estimate excludes the impact of acquiring cosmetic product and breast implant maker Mentor, a deal expected to close in January that will dilute earnings by 3 cents to 5 cents. Johnson & Johnson included that impact in its forecasts.

The revenue drop, a rarity for J&J, was led by an 11% plunge in pharmaceutical sales to $5.7 billion. That decline was partly a result of a 41.4% drop in sales of the anti-psychotic Risperdal, which now has generic competition.

Medical-device sales fell 2%, to $5.6 billion. Consumer products eked out a 1.2% increase in sales to $3.9 billion, helped by the launch of allergy treatment Zyrtec as an over-the-counter medicine.

For the full year, net income jumped 22%, to $12.95 billion, while revenue rose 4.3%, to $63.75 billion.

Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...