BIG PHARMA EARNINGS WATCH: JOHNSON & JOHNSON
Big Pharma Giant Kicks Off Q4 Earnings After Hiking Prices More Than 40 Times in 2023
This past week, brand name drug giant Johnson & Johnson kicked off the first round of Big Pharma earnings calls for the fourth quarter of 2023. The company surpassed Wall Street analysts’ earnings and profit expectations after hiking prices more than 40 times last year. Full-year 2023 sales also beat consensus estimates as the world’s biggest maker of health care products posted a total yearly haul of $85.2 billion.
Johnson & Johnson
- Johnson & Johnson reported earnings and revenue that both topped Wall Street analysts’ expectations.
- The Big Pharma giant brought in $21.4 billion in sales for the quarter and updated their 2024 profit forecast after better than expected Q4 earnings – predicting 2024 sales to reach nearly $90 billion.
- The company’s pharmaceutical division also outperformed expectations, bringing in $13.72 billion.
- The pharmaceutical division’s strong performance was led by cancer drug Stelara – which increased sales 22.4 percent year over year to bring in $2.6 billion in Q4 – as well as multiple myeloma drug Darzalex, which grew sales by 15.3 percent, posting $2.8 billion in Q4.
The strong earnings report comes as the Big Pharma giant has continued to price-gouge patients, with more than 30 price hikes in each of the last two years. According to reports from the Wall Street Journal, the company could continue its streak and raise prices across its portfolio of medicines later this month. Johnson & Johnson also has a history of engaging anti-competitive practices to block its blockbuster products from facing competition.
Johnson & Johnson
- Johnson & Johnson engaged in more than 40 price hikes in 2023.
- According to a recent ICER report, price hikes that were unsupported by new clinical evidence on multiple myeloma drug Darzalex and breast cancer drug Ibrance led to additional consumer spending of $248 million and $151 million respectively.
- The Big Pharma manufacturer also hiked prices on nearly 30 prescription medications in 2022 – at an average rate of five percent.
- Spending on the company’s blockbuster cancer drug Imbruvica is expected to exceed $41 billion between 2027-2036 thanks to an anti-competitive patent scheme that extended a monopoly on the high-priced cancer drug by more than nine years. Imbruvica costs an eye-popping $180,000 per year.
- Johnson & Johnson also entered a recent settlement with fellow drug maker Amgen to delay the entry of biosimilar competition to its blockbuster cancer drug Stelara until at least 2025.
Stay tuned as we continue to monitor fourth quarter earnings calls from brand name drug companies in the weeks ahead.
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