Amgen Earnings Beat Forecasts, but Outlook Tepid

Amgenreported a profit that surpassed what analysts expected Monday, but issued a 2011 earnings outlook that was below what Wall Street forecasts.


The biotech giant reported fourth-quarter earnings of $1.17 a share, excluding one-time items. Amgen earned $1.05 a share during the same period a year earlier.

Sales for the most recent quarter rose to $3.84 billion, up from $3.81 billion last year.

The company was seen earning $1.11 a share on revenue of $3.81 billion in the most recent quarter.

In addition, Amgen said it expects 2011 revenue between $15.1 billion and $15.5 billion and earnings of $5 to $5.20 per share, excluding items.

Wall Street analysts expected 2011 revenue of $15.21 billion, and earnings of $5.25 a share.

Shares of Amgen advanced in extended trading Monday. Get after-hour quotes for Amgen here.

The shares closed at $57.26 in the regular New York Stock Exchange session. Volume exceeded 5 million shares before the closing bell.

"2010 was a strong year with approvals of Prolia and XGEVA," said Kevin Sharer, CEO of Amgen, in a prepared statement. "We delivered solid EPS growth while absorbing the impact of health care reform. Our priorities in 2011 are to make Prolia and XGEVA successes, advance and enrich our pipeline, and build value for our shareholders."

Amgen's total product sales were $3,760 million in the fourth quarter of 2010 versus $ 3,743 million in the same period a year ago. U.S. product sales were $2,869 million in the fourth quarter of 2010 versus $2,882 million last year.

Among the firm's major drugs, worldwide sales of Aransep decreased 2 percent while Epogen sales plunged 16 percent.

Meanwhile, sales of Neulasta, Neupogen and Enbrel rose 3 percent. And sales of Sensipar, Vectibix and Nptale soared 10 percent, 20 percent and 59 percent, respectively.

BioVex Acquisition

Separately on Monday, Amgen agreed to acquire BioVex, a privately held, venture-funded, biotechnology company headquartered in Woburn, Mass.

Under the terms of the deal, Amgen will pay up to $1 billion: $425 million in cash at closing and up to $575 million in additional payments depending on sales and regulatory outcomes.