Why Pfizer Shareholders Are Smiling After Earnings

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When Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) reported first-quarter 2019 results before markets opened Tuesday, the drugmaker posted adjusted diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.85 on revenues of $13.12 billion. In the same period a year ago, the company reported EPS of $0.75 on revenues of $12.91 billion. First-quarter results also compare to the consensus estimates for EPS of $0.75 and $12.99 billion in revenues.

The company also raised its full-year EPS guidance from a prior range of $2.82 to $2.92 to a new range of $2.83 to $2.93. Pfizer also raised its guidance for adjusted other income from $100 million to $200 million. The company still expects $52 billion to $54 billion in full-year revenues.

While the company did not offer second-quarter guidance, analysts are expecting EPS of $0.75 and revenues of $13.37 billion. For the full year, analysts are looking for EPS of $2.89 and revenues of $53.25 billion.

The first-quarter was the beginning of a reorganization of Pfizer’s commercial operations into three businesses: biopharmaceuticals; Upjohn off-patent and generic established medicines; and consumer health care for the company’s over-the-counter medicines. Biopharma revenues rose 7% to $9.19 billion, Upjohn revenues rose 1% to $3.08 billion, and consumer health care revenues fell 2% to $858 million.

CEO Dr. Albert Bourla commented:

Our new commercial structure is designed to maximize today’s revenue growth opportunities while transitioning the company to a period post-2020 where we expect sustained mid-single-digit operational revenue growth through 2025.

CFO Frank D’Amelio added:

We were able to achieve 5% operational revenue growth and delivered Adjusted diluted EPS growth of 13%, primarily reflecting the strong performance of certain key products and the net impact of our share repurchases.

D’Amelio also noted that in the quarter the company returned $10.9 billion to shareholders in the form of share buybacks and dividends.

Pfizer stock traded up about 3.4% at $40.94 in the noon hour Tuesday. The 52-week range is $34.37 to $46.47, and the 12-month consensus price target is $44.00.


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