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January 31, 2018

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Pfizer’s US$11b gain from new tax lifts Q4 profit

PFIZER Inc beat analysts’ estimate for adjusted profit yesterday, helped by strong demand for its pneumonia vaccine Prevnar and rheumatoid arthritis drug Xeljanz, while reporting an US$11 billion gain from the new tax law.

The largest US drugmaker also forecast full-year earnings and revenue well ahead of Wall Street estimates and said it would invest about US$5 billion in the United States over the next five years.

The drugmaker said it would pay about US$15 billion in taxes over eight years to bring funds kept overseas back to the United States under the new tax laws.

Pfizer said the 2018 forecast reflected a full-year contribution from the consumer healthcare business, which the drugmaker plans to divest or spin-off this year.

The company said it booked a gain of US$11.34 billion from the new tax law, leading to a surge in fourth-quarter profit to US$12.27 billion, or US$2.02 per share.

Excluding the tax gain and other items, the company earned 62 cents per share. Revenue rose marginally to US$13.70 billion.

Analysts on average were expecting a profit of 56 cents per share and revenue of US$13.68 billion, according to Thomson Reuters.

Prevnar raked in sales of US$1.53 billion, up 8.3 percent from a year earlier, and above hopes of US$1.4 billion, according to consensus estimate from Barclays.

Xeljanz sales jumped 47.5 percent to US$410 million, beating estimates of US$393 million.

However, sales of the company’s breast cancer treatment Ibrance came below consensus estimate, despite an 11.4 percent increase to US$716 million.


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