June 22, 2002 |
Merck & Co. said its Medco unit acted properly when it booked revenue from patient co-payments to pharmacies that it never collected, but its shares fell on a report that questioned the practice. Shares of Merck fell $2.22 to $49.98 on the NYSE, their lowest level since late 1997. Merck declined to comment on how the report about its Merck-Medco unit might affect the company's planned spinoff of about 20% of Medco through an initial public offering, which Wall Street expects next week.
July 18, 2002 |
Merck & Co. said smaller rival Ivax Pharmaceuticals Inc. infringed its patents to create a version of Fosamax, a drug that treats bone loss associated with age. Lawyers for Merck say in a lawsuit filed Monday in federal court in Delaware that Ivax is using the inventions, patented between 1986 and 2001, and has applied to the Food and Drug Administration to sell a generic version of Fosamax in the U.S. Shares of Whitehouse Station, N.J.-based Merck rose 49 cents to $44.50 on the NYSE.
February 21, 2007 |
Merck & Co., bowing to pressure from parents and medical groups, is immediately suspending its lobbying campaign to persuade state legislatures to mandate that adolescent girls get the company's new vaccine against cervical cancer as a requirement for school attendance. The drug maker, which announced the change Tuesday, had been criticized for quietly funding the campaign, via a third party, to require that 11- and 12-year-old girls get the three-dose vaccine in order to attend school.
July 26, 2007 |
The increased heart risk from Vioxx, Merck & Co.'s withdrawn arthritis medicine, begins much earlier than after 18 months of use, according to a study contradicting assertions by the drug maker and its scientists. The 2,434-patient study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, was halted early when the medicine was pulled from the market in September 2004. Although the median duration of treatment was only 7.
March 13, 2007 |
Merck & Co.'s Vioxx painkiller helped cause an Idaho mail carrier's heart attack, a New Jersey jury found, ordering the drug maker to pay him and his wife $47.5 million in a retrial of a case the man originally lost. Jurors in Atlantic City imposed actual damages of $20 million and punitive damages of $27.5 million after ruling that Vioxx was partly to blame for Frederick Humeston's 2001 heart attack.
March 3, 2007 |
Jurors in New Jersey found that Merck & Co. failed to provide adequate warnings about health risks tied to its withdrawn arthritis drug Vioxx in one case, but they decided that it gave adequate warning in another in two suits tried simultaneously.
March 1, 2007 |
Merck & Co. raised its earnings forecast for the first quarter on higher demand for new drugs including a cervical cancer vaccine and a diabetes pill. First-quarter profit probably will be 63 cents to 67 cents a share when costs for job cuts and plant closings are excluded, said Whitehouse Station, N.J.-based Merck. The forecast beat the average estimate of 59 cents a share, excluding restructuring costs, of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.
April 11, 1998 |
The Food and Drug Administration advisory panel on Friday backed a new drug to help prevent heart attacks. Aggrastat, to be sold by Merck & Co., prevents blood platelets from clumping into dangerous clots that can block arteries. The panel said the drug could be used in combination with the blood thinner heparin in patients who come to emergency rooms with a form of chest pain known as unstable angina. The FDA is not bound by advisory panel recommendations.
July 22, 1998 |
Merck & Co.'s shares plunged Tuesday after the drug maker reported second-quarter earnings slightly below expectations and lowered its profit expectations for the year. Stocks of other pharmaceutical companies followed Merck down even though some of them reported earnings at or above Wall Street forecasts. Merck said its earnings rose 15% in the latest quarter to $1.32 billion, or $1.07 a diluted share, a penny under the consensus earnings estimate of analysts polled by First Call. Sales rose 9.
April 1, 2006 |
Merck & Co. suffered a significant legal setback Friday when an appeals court allowed health insurers and others to sue to recover the billions of dollars they spent on the Vioxx pain reliever. Merck attorney Ted Mayer called the ruling "deeply flawed" and said the company would appeal the decision by three New Jersey appellate judges to the state Supreme Court.