LONDON Feb 8 GlaxoSmithKline sales and
profits jumped in the fourth quarter, helped by falling
sterling, but the drugmaker cautioned profit growth could be
impacted in 2017 by generic competition to its top-selling lung
Outgoing Chief Executive Andrew Witty, presenting his final
set of results, said demand for new medicines was increasing and
the company's pipeline of experimental medicines provided fuel
for further growth.
Quarterly sales rose 21 percent in sterling terms to 7.59
billion pounds ($9.48 billion), generating core earnings per
share (EPS) up 45 percent at 26.1 pence, GSK said on Wednesday.
Analysts, on average, had forecast sales of 7.45 billion
pounds and core EPS, which excludes certain items, of 25p,
Thomson Reuters data shows.
Core earnings per share, in constant currencies, are set to
be flat to slightly lower in 2017, if there are substitutable
generic copies of Advair in the United States by mid-year, as
many analysts expect. If generics don't arrive, core EPS should
increase between 5 and 7 percent.
January 2017 average exchange rates, if applied to whole of
2017, would benefit sterling core EPS by around 9 percent, the
($1 = 0.8005 pounds)
(Reporting by Ben Hirschler; editing by Martinne Geller)