Merck, Amgen's falling profits still beat Street

Earnings season continues with a couple of biggies: Merck unveiled profits that suffered from merger-and-restructuring charges, and Amgen reported street-beating earnings despite some sales declines. Meanwhile, two Japanese drugmakers posted mixed results. Here are the highlights:

  • Merck reported a 52 percent decline in second-quarter profit, as merger-related and restructuring costs more than offset a near doubling in sales as a result of its takeover of Schering-Plough. But without those one-time charges, profits actually grew, beating analysts' estimates. The company's biggest drug, Singulair, posted flat sales of $1.26 billion, while the newly-off-patent blood-pressure drugs Cozaar and Hyzaar saw revenues drop 46 percent to $485 million. Merck earnings | Report | Report

  • Amgen posted better-than-expected Q2 earnings, but lost ground on some of its most important drugs. The anemia drug Aranesp lost 13 percent of its sales, which came in at $603 million; Enbrel sales fell two percent to $877 million. But as Reuters points out, investors were looking past this quarter's numbers, counting on the newly launched Prolia to give Amgen a new boost. Amgen earnings | Report | Report

  • Daiichi Sankyo said it might boost its annual outlook after quarterly profit skyrocketed, aided by a turnaround at its Indian subsidiary Ranbaxy Laboratories. Profits grew to $808 million, almost ten times what they were a year earlier. Report

  • Takeda Pharmaceutical took a big hit from the loss of patent protection on the ulcer treatment Prevacid. Profits fell by one-fourth to $1.2 billion, and the company stuck to its lower-than-last-year forecast for 2010. Report