Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Pfizer's Results: "Two Paths Diverge, Through The Woods" -- Q3 Misses, Vs. Merck's Q3 Beat

Ian C. Read just said he expects his full year 2016 "as adjusted" EPS range to be about a nickel shy of the prior guidance range he'd announced. Weighing on his guidance is the cost of those abandoned inversions, and M&A charges (like Medivation, imaged at right) -- more generally. It didn't help that his sales were a little light, overall, either.

For the quarter, Pfizer missed EPS expectations by a penny, but the catalyst driving the stock down on the NYSE this morning -- is the trimmed full year expectations. All of which places Pfizer. . . on the darker path, through the wood, when compared to Merck's (especially so, since Pfizer doesn't have a next gen immuno-oncology candidate on market).

You'll recall that Merck posted a decidedly solid Q3 last week, exceeding sales expectations, and upping the range of its full year EPS guidance. Since baseball is on my mind, I'd say that a string of solid singles and doubles -- by Merck's Mr. Frazier -- lead to its win, while Pfizer's Chairman decided to swing at a breaking ball -- in the dirt. He was looking for a largely-delusional grand slam from his vaunted inversion, and got pretty much the opposite, as all those structuring and reorg bills came due. Smile.

In any event, here is the US News report on it:

. . . .Drugmaker Pfizer's third-quarter profit plunged 38 percent as higher spending and a slew of charges related to acquisitions more than offset higher sales.

The mediocre results missed Wall Street expectations, Pfizer lowered the top end of its 2016 profit forecast and it said it was scrapping development of a highly touted experimental cholesterol drug.

Following Pfizer Inc.'s Sept. 26 announcement that it won't split into two companies to accelerate growth — a move some investors and analysts had hoped would boost Pfizer's lagging shares — investors began selling shares.

In premarket trading Tuesday, shares fell $1.21, or 3.8 percent, to $30.50.

The maker of Viagra and pain treatment Lyrica posted net income of $1.32 billion, or 21 cents per share. That's down from $2.13 billion, or 34 cents per share, in 2015's third quarter. . . .

And now you know -- I like Mr. Frazier's steady, solid approach, here. . . And, in truth, all the while, we can scarcely breathe -- waiting for 7 PM this evening. C'mon you Cubs. . . smile.


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