Amgen expects smaller hit from healthcare reform

Time for another update on first-quarter pharma earnings. Two more companies--Baxter International and Amgen--cut their full-year outlook because of the new healthcare reform law. But in both cases, sales and profits grew for the quarter. Here's more.

  • Baxter (NYSE: BAX) posted net profits of $525 million for the quarter, or $563 million excluding the one-time charge related to drug benefits for its retirees, required by healthcare reform. Sales grew by 11 percent to $3.1 billion. But after the company cut its full-year EPS expectations--a change not solely from the reform law, but also because of mistakes in predicting growth for certain of its products--its shares fell the most since 2003. Baxter earnings | Report | Report

  • Amgen (NASDAQ: AMGN) saw net income grow to $1.17 billion, or $1.18 a share, on revenues of $3.59 billion. That 8.6 increase in sales was driven in part by price increases of up to 5 percent on six of its drugs, analysts said. For instance, the company hiked Enbrel's price by 4.9 percent in March, helping grow sales by 6 percent to $804 million. On healthcare reform, the company said revenues would come in on the low end of its forecast; it's expecting the law to hit sales by 2 percent this year--much less than some other drugmakers. Amgen's earnings | Report | Report

  • As you know, Genzyme (NASDAQ: GENZ) reported an expected $175 million fine from its manufacturing troubles, a charge that pushed its Q1 results into negative territory. The company reported a loss of $115 million, or 43 cents a share; excluding items, EPS was 37 cents, higher than analyst expectations of 33 cents. Revenue fell to $1.07 billion, below Wall Street forecasts, as the company struggled to produce enough drugs to meet demand. Genzyme earnings | Report