Drug and medical device maker Abbott Laboratories reported a 48 percent jump in its second-quarter profit Wednesday on lower expenses and a one-time tax benefit.
The North Chicago, Ill.-based company says total sales increased 9 percent to $9.62 billion, led by double-digit growth of drugs and nutritionals in emerging markets and increasing demand for its best-selling product Humira. Sales of the company's blockbuster inflammatory drug increased 25 percent to nearly $2 billion in the quarter.
Humira and other drugs made up for lackluster growth of the company's medical devices and infant formula, which were hurt by concerns of overuse and previous product recalls, respectively. Sales of heart stents, which are used to open clogged arteries, decreased 1.6 percent to $525 million for the quarter. In the U.S. sales dropped nearly 13 percent. U.S. infant nutritional sales fell 11 percent to $299 million, but were offset by a 12 percent increase internationally.
The company earned $1.94 billion, or $1.23 per share, for the period. Excluding one-time expenses the company would have earned $1.12 per share. That was one penny higher than the average estimate of Wall Street analysts polled by FactSet.
Abbott raised its full-year earnings-per-share guidance 4 cents to between $4.58 and $4.68, predicting double-digit earnings growth for 2011. Analysts expect $4.60 per share, on average.
Early this year Abbott said it would eliminate 1,900 employees from its pharmaceutical business as it struggles to maintain double-digit profit growth amid cost pressures. But the quarter's results highlighted the growth potential of the company's businesses in emerging markets like Russia, India and China. Total emerging market sales increased 23 percent to $2.59 billion.
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