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*Q3 sales fall 19 pct to $6.68 bln vs consensus $6.75 bln. Core EPS $1.51 vs consensus $1.44; full-year outlook held. LONDON, Oct 25- AstraZeneca's sales slumped by a bigger-than-expected 19 percent in the third quarter, underscoring the challenges confronting the drugmaker's new chief executive, Pascal Soriot.
BATON ROUGE, La.-- Louisiana Attorney General James "Buddy" Caldwell's office says five pharmaceutical companies will pay the state more than $18.6 million to resolve allegations they misreported drug price information to the state's Medicaid program.
*Dow down 0.2 pct, S&P 500 off 0.3 pct, Nasdaq off 0.3 pct. *Boeing dips after results, but Dow Chemical jumps on job-cut plans. The S&P 500 has lost 3.6 percent over the past five sessions, hurt by weak earnings outlooks and top-line revenue misses from large multinational companies.
Oct 24- Eli Lilly and Co and Bristol-Myers Squibb Co posted lower-than-expected profit as their former top medicines were pounded by cheaper generics and sales of other products disappointed, sending their shares lower. Lilly earned $1.33 billion, or $1.18 per share, in the third quarter. That compared with $1.24 billion or $1.11 per share a year earlier.
*China data points to strengthening recovery. *Dow Chemical to cut jobs. NEW YORK, Oct 24- U.S. stock index futures edged higher on Wednesday, indicating indexes may bounce from declines a day earlier when the Dow suffered its biggest drop in four months, following data from China that eased concerns about sluggish global growth.
Baxter International Inc. fell$. 82 or 1.3 percent, to $61.16. Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. fell$. 68 or 2.0 percent, to $33.36. Johnson& Johnson fell$. 82 or 1.1 percent, to $70.96.
Caterpillar Inc. reports quarterly financial results. Hasbro Inc. reports quarterly financial results. Peabody Energy Corp. reports quarterly financial results.
HARRISBURG, Pa.-- A new state tax incentive designed to encourage companies to hire in Pennsylvania passed both chambers of the Legislature on Wednesday and was sent to Gov. "The beauty of this approach is that this is not revenue that is in the state currently," Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Jake Corman, R- Centre, told colleagues. "
NEW YORK-- Abbott Laboratories said Monday that its experimental hepatitis C drug regimen cured 99 percent of patients in a midstage study with the most common and hardest-to-treat type of the disease. Abbott shares rose $2.77, or 4 percent, to close at $72.05 Monday.
Bank stocks rose broadly after Citigroup delivered a strong earnings report. Companies that rely on consumer spending, like Lowe's, TJX Cos. and Yum Brands, rose after the government reported that retail sales rose 1.1 percent in the U.S. last month.
NEW YORK-- A Jefferies& Co. analyst said Thursday that sales of diabetes drugs should keep growing at a strong clip for the rest of the decade, reaching $65 billion a year in 2020.. He said Eli Lilly and Co. should surpass France's Sanofi as the second-largest diabetes drug seller.
NEW YORK-- Goldman Sachs downgraded Johnson& Johnson, saying Tuesday that the current share price has captured all the potential for improved growth. However, Goldman analyst Jami Rubin wrote that Johnson& Johnson comes up short in the two areas she sees as likely to boost stock prices, new prescription drugs and capital allocation.
"We anticipate that Denmark- based Novo Nordisk A/S, already the global market leader in diabetic treatments, could jump into the top 10 global pharmaceutical companies in revenue terms over the next few years, while presently it is still a midsize company compared with its peers and specializes almost exclusively on diabetes treatments," said Standard& Poor's credit analyst Olaf Toelke.
NEW DEAL: Bristol-Myers Squibb and France's Sanofi are revamping their longtime partnership marketing some of their best-selling medications, blood thinner Plavix and blood pressure drugs Avapro and Avalide. THE TERMS: Bristol-Myers will keep selling Plavix in the U.S. through December 2019.
TRENTON, N.J.-- Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. and Sanofi SA said Wednesday that they are restructuring their longtime partnership selling popular heart medications, now that their sales are plunging due to recent, widespread competition from generic versions.
*Bristol to return rights to Plavix, Avapro to Sanofi. *Sanofi to make $200 mln terminal payment to Bristol in 2018. *Sanofi shares down 0.8 pct By James Regan.
LONDON, Oct 3- European stocks were set for a slightly lower open on Wednesday as new gloomy economic data and uncertainty about Spain's debt crisis eclipsed underlying optimism about coordinated monetary support from central banks across the world.
This will give Sanofi sole commercial control of the two treatments, although Bristol-Myers will keep rights to Plavix in the United States and Puerto Rico. In return, Sanofi will pay Bristol-Myers royalty payments through 2018 on its sales of branded and unbranded Plavix worldwide, excluding the U.S. and Puerto Rico, and on sales of Avapro/Avalide.
Ipsen said that Inspiration Biopharmaceuticals had not raised third-party financing by the contractual deadline of Sept. 30 and that it was therefore no longer obligated to pay the additional $12.5 million in exchange for Inspiration equity. The parties continue to explore various options, Ipsen said.
Now is the time to own stocks with big dividends, one analyst says. In health care, that means large cap pharmaceuticals. TheStreet.com reports.