Generic competition, charges cut into Merck's profit
WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J. Merck & Co. (MRK) says its fourth-quarter profit fell 7 percent as generic competition slashed sales of its blockbuster allergy drug Singulair and the drugmaker took sizeable restructuring and acquisition charges.
The world's third-biggest drugmaker by revenue says net income was $1.4 billion, or 46 cents per share, down from $1.51 billion, or 49 cents per share, a year earlier.
Excluding one-time charges totaling $1.14 billion, net income was $2.54 billion, or 83 cents per share, 2 cents more than analysts polled by FactSet were expecting.
The maker of Januvia and other diabetes pills says revenue totaled $11.74 billion, down 5 percent from 2011's fourth quarter. Analysts expected revenue of $11.47 billion.
Merck, which is based in Whitehouse Station, N.J., forecast 2013 earnings per share of $3.60 to $3.70, excluding charges.
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