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Amgen 2nd quarter profit rises; announces up to 2,900 job cuts

July 29 (Reuters) - Amgen Inc on Tuesday posted higher-than-expected second-quarter profit in a rebound from a disappointing first quarter, helped by strong sales of its rheumatoid arthritis drug Enbrel, and it significantly raised its full-year earnings forecast.

The world's largest biotechnology company also said it would cut 12 to 15 percent of its workforce and close two plants in a series of restructuring moves aimed at reallocating resources as it prepares for the eventual launch of new medicines it hopes will drive future growth.

Amgen said net profit rose to $1.55 billion, or $2.01 per share, from a profit of $1.26 billion, or $1.65 per share, a year ago.

Excluding items, Amgen earned $2.37 per share. Analysts on average expected $2.07 per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Revenue rose 11 percent to $5.2 billion, exceeding Wall Street estimates of $4.89 billion.

(Reporting by Bill Berkrot; Editing by James Dalgleish)