Lilly predicts double-digit earnings growth

Here's one bright spot today: Eli Lilly predicts a big year in 2008, with 14 percent growth in net profits and seven billion-dollar-plus products. Higher sales of drugs for depression (Cymbalta), diabetes (Byetta and Humalog), cancer (Alimta), and ED (tadalafil) will account for much of that growth. Lilly also says it's hoping to launch pasugrel, its anti-clotting drug candidate designed to prevent recurrent heart attacks and strokes, in 2008.

In its latest forecast, the company also affirmed its 2007 expectations of $3.50 to $3.55 in earnings per share, excluding special charges. For 2008? It's predicting $3.85 to $4 per share, above analysts' previous expectations of $3.81 per share. The dark cloud in all this news, at least for Lilly's workforce, is that the earnings growth depends in part on increased productivity--and that includes an unspecified number job cuts.

- check out the release from Eli Lilly
- read the report from Dow Jones

ALSO: Take a look at Lilly's pipeline. Report