Merck Q1 profit up 7 pct. despite sales decline

AP News
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Posted: Apr 29, 2014 7:23 AM
Merck Q1 profit up 7 pct. despite sales decline

WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J. (AP) — Merck & Co.'s first-quarter profit rose 7 percent, as heavy cost-cutting offset lower sales due to generic competition and a tax benefit in last year's quarter.

The maker of the type 2 diabetes pill Januvia says net income was $1.71 billion, or 57 cents per share, up from $1.59 billion, or 52 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding one-time items, net income would have been $2.6 billion, or 88 cents per share. Analysts surveyed by FactSet were expecting 79 cents per share.

Revenue totaled $10.26 billion. Analysts expected $10.44 billion.

Merck, based in Whitehouse Station, N.J., reaffirmed its 2014 forecast for profit of $2.15 to $2.47 per share.