BIG PHARMA EARNINGS WATCH: PFIZER & AMGEN
Brand Name Big Pharma Giants Surpass Expectations After Hiking Prices
New second quarter earnings reports released yesterday from Big Pharma giants Pfizer and Amgen demonstrate yet again that price hikes continue to support big time profits for brand name drug companies. Both pharmaceutical manufacturers beat Wall Street expectations for the second quarter of 2020.
Pfizer reported stronger-than-expected Q2 earnings.
- Pfizer reported revenue of $11.8 billion – topping analysts’ expectations.
- Sales also grew for Pfizer’s biopharma sector. The brand name drug company’s biopharma revenue increased 4 percent to $9.8 billion.
- Top-selling blood-thinner drug Eliquis posted a 19% increase in Q2 sales.
And while price-gouging American patients is keeping profits high for Pfizer, the introduction of a generic version to the company’s blockbuster pain medication Lyrica demonstrates how increased competition in the marketplace is working elsewhere to lower prices.
Sales of Lyrica continued to dip this quarter after the drug began facing generic competition last year — providing patients with more affordable alternatives.
Amgen also announced it had topped Wall Street expectations on its earnings in the second quarter.
- The company beat expectations, reporting earnings per share of $4.25 for Q2, better than the estimate of $3.77.
- The company reported revenues of $6.2 billion in the second quarter, up 6 percent from the same quarter the year before thanks to new psoriasis treatment Otezla.
- Otezla accounted for an eye-popping $561 million in sales, beating Wall Street expectations.
The strong earnings reports come as both companies have continued to hike prices on their prescription drugs.
- Pfizer has already hiked the prices of 126 drugs this year.
- Breakout drug Vyndaqel is estimated to “become among the most costly cardiovascular treatments ever,” according to the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER).
- Pfizer has already hiked the price of Eliquis by 6 percent, Ibrance by 5 and Xeljanz by 5 percent this year.
- Price hikes on Lyrica were not supported by new clinical evidence and accounted for an unnecessary increase in U.S. drug spending of nearly $700 million from 2017-2018 according to ICER.
- Already this year, the company has hiked prices five times – including on popular drug Prolia – by an average of five percent.
- In 2019, Amgen hiked the price of its blockbuster osteoporosis drug Prolia and heart medication Corlanor.
- Price hikes on the company’s cancer drug Neulasta were not supported by new clinical evidence and accounted for an unnecessary increase in U.S. drug spending of nearly $500 million from 2017-2018 according to the Institute for Clinical and Economic Review (ICER).
See how other brand name drug Novartis and Johnson & Johnson beat Wall Street expectations after hiking prices on American patients HERE and HERE.
Stay tuned this week as we continue to monitor Q2 earnings announcements from brand name drug companies.