Amgen profit tops Wall Street expectations; raises 2014 outlook

Mon Oct 27, 2014 5:52pm EDT
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By Bill Berkrot

(Reuters) - Amgen Inc (AMGN.O: Quote) on Monday reported higher-than-expected third quarter earnings and revenue, even as net profit fell due to a hefty restructuring charge, and the company raised its full-year forecast and the number of job cuts it expects to make.

The world's largest biotechnology company recorded a $376 million charge related to restructuring moves announced July 29 and expects to take another charge of up to $150 million in the fourth quarter, as well as additional charges next year.

Amgen shares rose 1 percent. They are up about 20 percent since the restructuring announcement that involved plant closings and job cuts, now expected to exceed 2,900. The company had previously estimated 2,400 to 2,900 job cuts as it looks to reallocate resources to prepare for the launch of new medicines, including a potential multibillion-dollar cholesterol drug.

Further details of the restructuring are expected to be laid out at a business update for analysts and investors in New York on Tuesday.

Excluding items, Amgen earned $2.30 per share, exceeding analysts' average expectations by 19 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Amgen said it now expects 2014 adjusted earnings of $8.45 to $8.55 per share, up from the boosted forecast it provided in July of $8.20 to $8.40 per share. The company expects full-year revenue of $19.8 billion to $20 billion. It previously forecast $19.5 billion to $19.7 billion.

"The numbers on the top line were a little better than we thought and on the bottom line in particular they were very strong," said Cowen and Co analyst Eric Schmidt.

"The guidance went up. It looked very conservative, but also certainly welcome," he added.   Continued...

An Amgen sign is seen at the company's office in South San Francisco, California October 21, 2013. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith