Summary Box: Merck profit spikes in first quarter

AP News
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Posted: Apr 29, 2011 11:17 AM
Summary Box: Merck profit spikes in first quarter

PROFIT SPIKE: Merck & Co.'s first-quarter profit more than tripled on lower costs from integrating Schering-Plough and double-digit sales growth for key drugs, which offset competition from generic versions of two big heart drugs.

THE NUMBERS: Merck had adjusted profit of $2.86 billion, or 92 cents a share, and revenue of $11.58 billion, beating Wall Street expectations.

MERCK'S MOMENTUM: The company just got approval of a promising melanoma drug, Sylatron, and has five experimental drugs under review by U.S. and European regulators, including ones for diabetes, hepatitis C and contraception.