Merck reported better-than-expected quarterly results on Tuesday, helped by strong sales of consumer products and medicines for arthritis and HIV, sending its shares up more than 1 percent in morning trading.
Merck, the No. 2 U.S. drugmaker, has been busy with deal-making in recent months, including an agreement to sell its consumer care business to Germany's Bayer for $14.2 billion. In June, it agreed to buy Idenix Pharmaceuticals for $3.85 billion and hopes to combine the two companies' most promising drugs to produce a faster, more effective cure for hepatitis C.
Chief Executive Kenneth Frazier, in a conference call with analysts on Tuesday, said Merck was not interested in major acquisitions, but instead favors smaller "bolt-on" deals like the Idenix transaction.