Vaccine pushes Pfizer beyond expectations in fourth quarter

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The Pfizer logo is displayed at the company’s headquarters in New York. (AP File Photo/Mark Lennihan)

Sales of COVID-19 vaccines boosted Pfizer’s earnings well above expectations in the fourth quarter, but the drugmaker is setting a lower-than-expected bar for 2022.

Pfizer launched full-year earnings and revenue forecasts on Tuesday that fell short of analysts’ expectations, even as the drugmaker expects another strong year of sales for its vaccine, Comirnaty, and its new treatment. against coronaviruses, Paxlovid.

Pfizer expects Comirnaty to make an additional $32 billion in revenue in 2022, while Wall Street is looking for more than $34 billion. The company and the street expect an additional $22 billion in revenue from Paxlovid, which received regulatory approval in the United States shortly before Christmas.

Overall, Pfizer expects adjusted earnings in the new year to be between $6.35 and $6.55 per share on revenue of $98 billion to $102 billion.

Industry analysts expect earnings of $6.71 per share on $103.18 billion in revenue, according to FactSet.

Pfizer’s two-shot coronavirus vaccine brought in $36.78 billion in revenue in 2021, its first full year on the market.

The $12.5 billion in sales it recorded in the fourth quarter helped Pfizer’s revenue double from the last quarter of 2020.

The COVID-19 vaccine became Pfizer’s top-selling product in the second quarter of last year, before children started getting the preventative shots and adults started getting booster doses.

The New York drugmaker accounts for the vast majority of Comirnaty’s revenue and shares profits, as well as the cost of manufacturing and distributing the vaccine, with its development partner BioNTech.

Apart from Comirnaty and Paxlovid, Pfizer products include several cancer treatments, other vaccines, and internal medicine drugs like Eliquis, to prevent blood clots and strokes.

Overall, Pfizer reported fourth-quarter adjusted profit of $1.08 on revenue of $23.84 billion.

Analysts had expected earnings of 87 cents per share on sales of $24.16 billion for the fourth quarter.

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