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Biogen Reports Better-Than-Expected Earnings - Stock Lower

Biogen reports better-than-expected first-quarter earnings and says the pandemic brings "unanticipated and potentially unquantifiable risks to our business" near term.
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Biogen  (BIIB) - Get Biogen Inc. Report shares fell in pre-market trading Wednesday, even as the biotechnology stalwart reported better-than-expected first-quarter earnings.

The Cambridge, Mass., company earned $9.14 a share in the quarter, beating analysts’ forecast of $7.74, according to Zacks Investment Research. And Biogen posted sales of $3.53 billion, compared with analysts’ estimate of $3.42 billion.

In the year-earlier quarter Biogen generated adjusted EPS of $6.98 and sales of $3.49 billion.

“We delivered strong financial results in the first quarter, and we continued to develop and expand our pipeline, including making good progress toward the U.S. regulatory filing for aducanumab, as well as bolstering our efforts in gene therapy through a collaboration with Sangamo  (SGMO) - Get Sangamo Therapeutics, Inc. Report,” Chief Executive Michel Vounatsos said in a statement.

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Aducanumab is a human monoclonal antibody that treats Alzheimer's disease. Sangamo Therapeutics is a biotech company.

Vounatsos said the coronavirus has hurt Biogen. “The magnitude and uncertainty surrounding this pandemic clearly introduce unanticipated and potentially unquantifiable risks to our business and results over the near-term,” he said.

“That said, we believe that compelling opportunities exist in the therapeutic areas we are pursuing. This crisis has had a profound impact on our organization and the world at large. We have taken a broad set of actions, and we will remain fully engaged.”

After a Biogen meeting in March, at least 100 of its employees and their contacts, including two Biogen senior executives, caught the virus, according to The New York Times.

Biogen stock at last check stood at $308.40, down 6.3%. The stock has gained 15% over the past three months.