Reckitt Benckiser full-year sales beat estimates on health focus

Consumer goods maker Reckitt Benckiser Group posted stronger-than-expected full-year sales on Monday, helped by its focus on faster-growing consumer health products.

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The maker of Mucinex cold medicine, Nurofen tablets and Durex condoms, which has been pouring resources into such consumer health products, said like-for-like sales rose 6 percent in the full year, versus analysts' expectations for a rise of 5.3 percent, according to a company-supplied consensus.

In October, Reckitt forecast a gain of 5 percent, which was slightly above a prior forecast of between 4 and 5 percent.

Net revenue was 8.87 billion pounds ($13 billion), above an average analyst estimate of 8.81 billion.

Reckitt said it expects to deliver another year of growth and margin expansion despite the macroeconomic environment remaining tough. It forecast like-for-like net revenue growth of 4 to 5 percent and for its operating margin to expand at a "moderate" rate in the medium term.

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