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Pfizer's shares hit by drug pull out


Pfizer's shares hit by drug pull out


Drugmaker Pfizer’s decision to abandon what it had called its most important new medicine caused the companies shares to plummet. The drug – torcetrapib – was supposed to improve people’s cholesterol, but in clinical trials there were increased deaths and heart problems.

Analysts now expect Pfizer to boost its dividend by at least 20%, speed up it cost-cutting plans, and look to acquire new products by buying other companies. Pfizer is already in the midst of a major restructuring that could see as much as 10% of its 100,000 workforce laid off. This news is likely to accelerate that effort.

Pfizer’s shares fell by nearly 16% at one stage, but later recovered somewhat. Some of its rivals -including AstraZenica and GlaxoSmithKline – saw the value of their stock rise as a competitor was removed. Investors know that there is big money to be made from successful drugs to lower cholesterol, which is a fatty substance in the blood linked to heart disease.

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