Johnson & Johnson’s
Covid-19 vaccine contributed $100 million to the company’s sales growth in the latest quarter, as U.S. health authorities re-evaluate the vaccine during a pause amid safety concerns.
As vaccination campaigns help ease the pandemic’s severity, Johnson & Johnson’s results from its other business lines showed a trend toward normality compared with the tumultuous first months of 2020.
Johnson & Johnson’s pharmaceutical revenue grew 10% year over year. Revenue from drugs such as Darzalex, for multiple myeloma, Stelara, for inflammatory diseases, and Erleada, for prostate cancer, helped drive the improvement.
Revenue from medical devices grew 11%, a recovery from the early days of the pandemic when many people put off elective medical procedures. Meanwhile, sales of consumer-health products declined by 2.3% compared with the same stretch last year, when shoppers were stocking up on health supplies to prepare for coronavirus lockdowns.
The New Brunswick, N.J.-based company logged first-quarter revenue of $22.32 billion, compared with $20.69 billion in last year’s first quarter. Analysts’ consensus forecast was for revenue of $21.98 billion, as compiled by FactSet.
The company’s net earnings were $6.2 billion, or $2.32 a share, compared with $5.8 billion, or $2.17 a share, a year earlier. Accounting for one-time items, Johnson & Johnson’s adjusted earnings were $2.59 a share. Analysts had forecast adjusted earnings of $2.34 a share.
In February, Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 vaccine became the third to win an emergency-use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, following approvals for shots from
Unlike those companies’ vaccines, Johnson & Johnson’s is given in a single dose, not two.
Last week, the FDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended a pause in the use of Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine after finding that six people who had received it developed blood clots and had low counts of blood platelets. Nearly 7 million doses of the vaccine had been administered in the U.S., the agencies said.
Authorities have been concerned, in part, that doctors would treat the blood-clot condition improperly if it emerged in more people.
Over the weekend,
Dr. Anthony Fauci,
the chief medical adviser to President Biden, said that he expected the vaccine to return to use by Friday, perhaps with additional restrictions or warnings. A federal vaccine-advisory panel is scheduled to meet Friday to make recommendations about the situation.
Write to Matt Grossman at firstname.lastname@example.org
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