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Johnson & Johnson profit beats, lifts forecast on cancer drug demand

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By Reuters
Johnson & Johnson profit beats, lifts forecast on cancer drug demand
The Johnson and Johnson logo is seen at an office building in Singapore January 17, 2018. REUTERS/Thomas White   -   Copyright  Thomas White(Reuters)

(Reuters) – Johnson & Johnson <JNJ.N> on Tuesday reported quarterly profit above estimates and raised its full-year forecast, as demand for its cancer drugs Zytiga and Imbruvica helped offset decline in sales of blockbuster drug, Remicade.

J&J said it now expects adjusted 2018 earnings per share to be in the range of $8.13 and $8.18, up from its previous range of $8.07 to $8.17.

Sales of rheumatoid arthritis treatment Remicade fell 16.3 percent to $1.38 billion in the quarter as pressure from biosimilars intensified. Analysts had expected revenue of $1.36 billion, according to Barclays.

As Remicade faces increased competition and the company’s consumer and medical health businesses come under pressure, J&J has been inking deals and spending more on its drug pipeline to beef up sales.

The healthcare conglomerate’s net earnings rose to $3.93 billion, or $1.44 per share, in the third quarter, from $3.76 billion, or $1.37 per share, a year earlier. [nPnc75mFsa]

Excluding items, the company earned $2.05 per share. Analysts on average expected $2.03 per share, according to I/B/E/S data from Refinitiv.

Sales rose 3.6 percent to $20.35 billion, above analysts’ average estimate of $20.05 billion.

(Reporting by Manas Mishra in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber and Arun Koyyur)