Why AbbVie Won Big in Q3, and Can Keep Winning

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When AbbVie Inc. (NYSE: ABBV) released its most recent quarterly results before the markets opened on Friday, the company posted $1.41 in earnings per share (EPS) and $7.0 billion in revenue. That compared with consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters of $1.36 in EPS on revenue of $7.0 billion. In the third quarter of last year, AbbVie said it had EPS of $1.21 and $6.39 billion in revenue.

Global Humira sales jumped 15.8% to $4.7 billion, or an increase of 14.8% operationally, excluding a 1.0% favorable impact from foreign exchange. This consisted of U.S. sales increasing 19.1% and international sales growing 6.8%.

At the same time, global Imbruvica net revenues were $688 million, with U.S. sales of $574 million and international profit sharing of $114 million, reflecting growth of 37.3% year over year.

In terms of the outlook for the 2017 full year, AbbVie sees EPS in the range of $5.53 to $5.55. The consensus estimates call for $5.53 in EPS and $27.97 billion in revenue for the full year.

Looking even further ahead, management believes that it is on track to meet or exceed its long-range guidance, and now expects global Humira sales to approach $21 billion in 2020. For 2018, AbbVie expects adjusted EPS in the range of $6.37 to $6.57, compared with the consensus estimate of $6.56 in EPS.

Richard A. Gonzalez, board chair and chief executive of AbbVie, commented:

We are pleased with the significant progress we have made with our strategic priorities, including the recent settlement of our HUMIRA patent disputes with Amgen, and the significant advancement with our late-stage pipeline of innovative products. This quarter we achieved a number of milestones, including promising data from several pivotal studies, regulatory approvals for MAVYRET and the U.S. regulatory submission and priority review designation for elagolix. We remain confident in our ability to continue to successfully execute on our long-term strategy and fuel sustainable industry-leading performance.

Shares of AbbVie were last seen up about 3% at $92.46, with a consensus analyst price target of $92.67 and a 52-week range of $55.06 to $98.26.