Revenues are ahead of our expectations, as ex-US revenue growth offset generic erosion, but were flat over the year. We believe growth will be strongly correlated with new product launches and it cannot afford any more late-stage difficulties. We see any share price strengthening as a chance to ‘reduce’ holdings.
KEITH BOWMAN | HARGREAVES LANSDOWN
These results are at the high end of expectations, from a continued push into emerging markets and a relentless focus on cost cuts. Growing sales for its major drugs are currently counterbalancing patent losses, but falling government health budgets cast a shadow. Market consensus is a ‘weak hold’.
DOMINIC VALDER | EVOLUTION SECURITIES
Sales guidance was below consensus and it is forecasting a flat to low single digit sales decline, compared to consensus forecasts of slight sales growth. The $4bn [£2.5bn] share buyback will please the markets but for us the key issue is it has the least sustainable set of businesses in our coverage universe.