Allergan's strong Q1 overshadowed by Valeant buyout questions

Allergan ($AGN) reported some strong first-quarter numbers today, beating analyst estimates for earnings and sales alike. But with a takeover offer hanging over its head, the company didn't get much time--or news space--to brag about the results.

The company's Q1 sales came in at $1.64 billion, a tick ahead of the expected $1.61 billion. Earnings were a solid beat at $1.18 compared with consensus estimates of $1.12. Plus, Allergan hiked its full-year earnings guidance, putting the top end of the range at $5.73, up from $5.48.

Investors aren't focused on these numbers, though. The forecast would be moot if Valeant's ($VRX) buyout succeeds and the closing comes quickly.

The company said in a statement that its board is weighing the Valeant offer and will "pursue the course of action that it believes is in the best interests" of Allergan's shareholders. And it reminded investors that it adopted a one-year poison pill late last month.

One thing the company did not do: announce a cost squeeze, Sterne Agee analyst Shibani Malhotra pointed out. "[T]he company appears to have chosen not to make drastic cost cuts to demonstrate its operating leverage, which is wise at this stage," Malhotra said. But analysts and investors do want to know how much Allergan could cut on its own, if it escaped the Valeant merger, she added.

- see the Allergan release

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