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Amgen Earnings Up 26% on Sales of Anemia Drug

October 28, 1998|From Times Wire Services

Amgen Inc., the world's largest biotechnology company, said Tuesday that third-quarter earnings rose 26% on an increase in sales of the anemia drug Epogen.

Net income rose to $221 million, or 83 cents a diluted share, from 66 cents a year earlier. The company was expected to earn 79 cents, the average estimate of analysts surveyed by First Call Corp.

The government last year said that it wouldn't pay for Epogen to treat anemic dialysis patients whose red blood-cell count exceeds a certain level, hurting sales of Epogen, which are paid for almost entirely by Medicare. The government then eased those restrictions.

Epogen sales rose 23% to $350 million from $285 million a year earlier. The drug made up half of Amgen's $2.4-billion 1997 revenue.

Total revenue rose 17% to $700.9 million from $598.3 million.

Amgen shares fell 31 cents to close at $77.63 on Nasdaq.

At a Glance:

* McKesson Corp. said strength at its U.S. pharmaceutical and medical-surgical units boosted quarterly profit 30%, beating Wall Street estimates. The San Francisco-based company posted net income of $55.1 million, or 52 cents per diluted share for the fiscal second quarter, compared with $39.6 million, or 40 cents, a year earlier. Analysts had expected McKesson to earn 50 cents. Revenue rose 35% to $6.9 billion from $5.1 million in the year-ago period.

* Malibu-based Jakks Pacific Inc. reported a record third-quarter profit of $6.0 million, or 45 cents per share, on revenue of $34.2 million, compared with net income of $2.4 million, or 29 cents, on sales of $15.9 million.

* Agoura Hills-based Guitar Center Inc. reported third-quarter net income of $4.7 million, or 22 cents per share, on revenue of $96.2 million, compared with net income of $3.3 million, or 15 cents, on revenue or $76 million, in the year-ago period.

* La Jolla-based Jenny Craig Inc. reported fiscal first-quarter net income of $2.5 million, or 12 cents per share, compared with a net loss of $4.6 million, or 22 cents. The diet center operator posted revenue of $85.6 million versus $86.7 million in the year-ago period.

* Los Angeles-based Univision Communications Inc., the U.S.' largest Spanish-language broadcaster, said third-quarter net income fell 80% because of one-time tax charges. Net income fell to $5 million, or 4 cents per share, from $25.1 million, or 21 cents, in the year-ago period. Revenue rose 22% to $138.9 million from $113.9 million.

* San Francisco-based Catellus Development Corp. said third-quarter earnings rose a better-than-expected 57%. Earnings rose to $27 million, or 25 cents a share, from $17.2 million, or 16 cents, in the year-earlier period.

* Pixar Animation Studios posted an unexpected third-quarter profit as the Richmond-based computer-animated film studio continued to benefit from its 1995 computer-generated hit movie "Toy Story." Net income fell about 77% to $867,000, or 2 cents a share, from $3.7 million, or 8 cents, a year ago. It was expected to have a loss of 2 cents.

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