Pfizer Slumps on 1Q Miss, Outlook Downgrade

Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) logged a weaker-than-expected 53% leap in first-quarter profits on Tuesday and the largest U.S. drug maker further spooked the Street by revealing disappointing revenue and slashing its 2013 guidance.

Shares of the blue-chip company retreated more than 3% in premarket trading in response to the gloomy news.

Pfizer said it earned $2.75 billion, or 38 cents a share, last quarter, compared with a profit of $1.79 billion, or 24 cents a share, a year earlier. Excluding one-time items, it earned 54 cents a share, down from 58 cents a year earlier and a penny shy of forecasts.

Still feeling the impact of the loss of exclusivity on blockbuster drug Lipitor, revenue slumped 9.3% to $13.5 billion, missing the Street’s view of $13.99 billion.

Pfizer added to the concern by downgrading its full-year outlook, forecasting non-GAAP EPS of $2.14 to $2.24 on revenue of $55.3 billion to $57.3 billion. By comparison, analysts had been calling for more robust EPS of $2.28 on sales of $57.25 billion.

Pfizer previously forecasted non-GAAP EPS of $2.20 to $2.30 on revenue of $56.2 billion to $58.2 billion.

“We remain focused on driving innovation and managing the business in the context of the challenging operating environment to ensure Pfizer remains well-positioned for long-term value creation,” Pfizer CEO Ian Read said in a statement.

Pfizer suffered a number of sales declines during the first quarter, highlighted by a 55% plunge in Lipitor sales to $626 million. Prevnar sales slumped 10% to $846 million, while Viagra revenue slid 7% to $461 million. On the other hand, Pfizer’s leading drug, Lyrica, enjoyed a 12% sales bounce to $1.07 billion.

Shares of New York-based Pfizer slid 3.38% to $29.40 ahead of Tuesday’s opening bell, setting them up to trim a solid 2013 rally of 21%.