Boosted by robust U.S. drug sales, diversified health-care giant Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) revealed a stronger-than-expected 37% leap in fourth-quarter profits on Tuesday.
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J&J said it earned $3.52 billion, or $1.23 a share, last quarter, compared with a profit of $2.57 billion, or 91 cents a share, a year earlier.
Excluding one-time items, it earned $1.24 a share, besting forecasts from analysts for $1.20.
Revenue rose 4.5% to $18.36 billion, trumping the Street’s view of $17.95 billion. Domestic sales jumped 7.4%, while international sales gained 2.4%.
J&J CEO Alex Gorsky highlighted “outstanding performance” in the company’s pharmaceutical business, which generated an 11.8% leap in revenue to $7.3 billion. U.S. pharmaceutical sales soared 17.9% to $3.55 billion, while international revenue was up 6.6% to $3.75 billion.
Looking ahead, J&J projected 2014 non-GAAP EPS of $5.75 to $5.85, compared with the Street’s view of $5.85.
Shares of New Brunswick, N.J.-based J&J ticked up 0.41% to $95.45 ahead of Tuesday’s opening bell. J&J’s shares have climbed almost 30% over the past 12 months.
Last week, private-equity giant Carlyle Group (NYSE:CG) offered to acquire J&J’s ortho-clinical diagnostics business for about $4.15 billion.