US pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson has confounded Wall Street expectations by announcing an 8% jump second-quarter profits.
Analysts put the boost down to strong consumer interest and a weakened dollar inflating sales overseas.
The company’s healthy figures were explained by higher sales of consumer products and medical devices. These include the new non-prescription allergy pill, Zyrtec, Acuvue contact lenses for astigmatism patients and surgical products for treating obesity.
For the first time, international sales topped US sales for contraceptives, medical devices and prescription drugs. Favourable currency exchange rates due to the weak dollar accounted for almost two-thirds of the increased sales.
The firm’s chief financial officer Dominic Caruso told analysts that the weak global economy is not hurting J&J revenue.
The New Jersey-based company posted net income of $3.33 billion, or $1.17 per share, compared with $3.08 billion, or $1.05 per share, in the second quarter of 2007. Revenue totalled $16.45 billion, up 9%.
Copyright PA Business 2008
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“I doubt that individual pharmacists employed by hospitals will suffer. On the contrary, in the US there is a rather severe shortage of pharmacists that is causing salaries to increase
quite a bit faster than those of other workers. In the US, a hospital pharmacist should be making $100,000 or more annually. “Sign-on” bonuses are now the norm for new hires. I have seen these advertised as high as $30,000. In our hospital, newly hired pharmacists have had their automobile and educational loans paid by the hospital in return for their services. I am 64 years old and have never had to worry about being employed or making a decent salary. There aren’t many professions that can make that boast.” – Robert Martin, Texas, USA
How does this compare with the European experience?