Pfizer’s outlook disappoints after Viagra loses patent protection and Lyrica faces same fate

Health, Fitness & Food

Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer reported fourth-quarter earnings and revenue on Tuesday that beat Wall Street’s expectations but its guidance for 2019 disappointed investors.

Shares of Pfizer fell more than 3 percent in premarket trading.

Here’s how the company did compared with what Wall Street expected:

  • Earnings: 64 cents per share vs. 63 cents per share forecast by Refinitiv
  • Revenue: $13.97 billion vs. $13.89 billion forecast by Refinitiv

In the fourth quarter, Pfizer reported adjusted earnings of 64 cents per share, 1 cent above Wall Street estimates. Revenue came in at $13.97 billion, higher than the $13.89 billion expected.

Pfizer forecast its 2019 adjusted earnings between $2.82 a share and $2.92 a share, below average analysts’ estimates of $3.04 a share. It sees revenue for 2019 between $52 billion and $54 billion, shy of estimates of $54.25 billion.

For the full year, Pfizer reported adjusted earnings $3 per share on revenue of $53.6 billion. It anticipates repurchasing about $9 billion of shares in 2019.

Innovative health revenue increased 10 percent, boosted by sales of blood thinner Eliquis and rheumatoid arthritis treatment Xeljanz. Viagra sales fell as Pfizer’s blockbuster sexual dysfunction drug lost patent protection.

“We enter 2019 with confidence in the competitive positioning of our businesses, the prospects for our recently launched products and product line extensions, as well as the strength and breadth of our research pipeline,” Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said in a press release.

The earnings report marks Bourla’s first since becoming CEO on Jan.1, succeeding Ian Read. The company announced plans to shuffle the company’s senior management team in October, and has been focused on bulking up its pipeline of drugs and therapies, especially in oncology, ahead of impending patent expirations.

Shares of Pfizer have fallen more than 9 percent since the beginning of this year. The stock has increased more than 1 percent over the past 12 months.

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