Pharma stock under pressure: AbbVie Inc (NYSE: ABBV)

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AbbVie Inc (NYSE: ABBV) stock lost over 0.9% on 25th April, 2019 (As of 12:56 pm GMT-4; Source: Google finance). The sales of the company’s best-selling drug Humira fell 5.6% to $4.446 billion. The company had previously warned investors that Humira sales would decline this year, as competitors like Mylan NV and Amgen Inc. are now selling lower-cost biosimilars in Europe. Further, it is expected to lose patent protection in the United States, its biggest market, in 2023, making 2019 a critical year for AbbVie to demonstrate it can compensate for the expected drop in sales by successfully launching new medicines and adding innovative treatments to its pipeline.

To protect Humira, the company has signed a series of deals with rivals, including Mylan NV and Amgen Inc, to prevent competition in the United States before 2023. AbbVie has also earmarked Skyrizi, its psoriasis treatment that won U.S. approval earlier this week, as a long-term opportunity.

Moreover, Global net revenues from the hematologic oncology portfolio of $1.173 billion rose 42.8 percent on a reported basis, or 43.2 percent operationally. Global IMBRUVICA net revenues were $1.022 billion, with U.S. net revenues of $829 million and international profit sharing of $193 million. Global VENCLEXTA net revenues were $151 million. Global HCV net revenues of $815 million declined 11.3 percent on a reported basis, or 9.1 percent operationally. In the U.S., HCV net revenues of $403 million grew 17.3 percent in the quarter.

ABBV in the first quarter of FY 19 has reported the adjusted earnings per share of $2.14, beating the analysts’ estimates for the adjusted earnings per share of $2.06, as per FactSet consensus. The company had reported 1.3 percent fall in the adjusted revenue to $7.83 billion in the first quarter of FY 19, beating the analysts’ estimates for revenue of $7.77 billion.

The company raised its expected full-year EPS to between $8.73 and $8.83 from between $8.65 and $8.75.

Meanwhile, AbbVie announced that the FDA accepted for priority review its New Drug Application (NDA) for upadacitinib for the treatment of adult patients with moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis. In addition, AbbVie announced that the FDA approved the use of IMBRUVICA (ibrutinib) in combination with obinutuzumab, for adult patients with previously untreated chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic lymphoma (CLL/SLL).

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