Abbott Laboratories Fourth Quarter Profits Fell 35%

Abbott Laboratories Fourth Quarter Profits Fell 35%
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Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) reported its fourth quarter earnings early this morning with mixed results. Shares initially rose 2 percent in pre-market trading but then started to fall. The pharmaceutical company beat earnings expectations for its third quarter and the three quarters before that, so investors were hoping that the company would continue its winning streak.

Abbott Laboratories Fourth Quarter Profits Fell 35%

In a statement released this morning, Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) reported fourth quarter ongoing earnings per share of $1.51 per share and full-year ongoing earnings per share of $5.07 per share. Wall Street analysts predicted $1.50 earnings per share. The company reported an increase in worldwide sales of 5.6 percent excluding foreign exchange. Reported sales rose 4.4 percent.

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While Abbott’s earnings per share report were roughly in-line with expectations, the company’s profit fell 35 percent to $1.05 billion. The company reported $1.62 billion in profit for the same quarter a year ago.

Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) completed the spinoff of AbbVie Inc (NYSE:ABBV), its research-based biopharmaceutical company Jan. 1. Abbott shareholders received one share of AbbVie for each share of Abbott they owned. It also launched several new products throughout the year.

Chairman and CEO Miles D. White said in the company’s statement, “In 2012 we achieved a significant milestone in Abbott’s 125-year history with the creation of AbbVie while delivering another year of strong results. Abbott’s mix of diversified healthcare businesses and pipeline is favorably aligned with key healthcare and emerging market trends and well positioned to deliver top-tier growth in 2013.”

The company also issued its guidance for 2013, estimating earnings per share to be between $1.98 and $2.04 per share. Wall Street’s expectations for the company’s 2013 guidance were $1.96 per share.

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