Healthcare Business

Johnson & Johnson Has a Lot on Its Hands After $8 Billion Court Ruling

The announcement that a jury has awarded $8 billion in damages to a man accusing Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) of failing to warn about the side effects of one of its antipsycotic drugs had the drugmaker’s share price lower on Wednesday.

The claim is in regards to Johnson & Johnson failing to warn that its antipsychotic drug Risperdal could cause young men to grow breasts.

Some are calling this amount excessive, especially since the plaintiff already has been awarded $680,000 in compensatory damages over these claims.

As a result, some investors are afraid that Johnson & Johnson could now be exposed to more lawsuits over Risperdal, among other pieces of its portfolio, including talcum powder and opioid treatments.

According to a recent filing, the company faces some 13,400 lawsuits tied to Risperdal, which allege the drug caused a condition called gynecomastia in boys, in which breast tissue becomes enlarged.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Risperdal in 2002 to treat schizophrenia, but it was not cleared for use in children until 2006.

For now, analysts seem to believe that this award is disproportionate and will be reduced.

Johnson & Johnson shares traded down 2% to $129.22 on Wednesday, in a 52-week range of $121.00 to $148.99. The consensus price target is $149.35.