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Lilly, Bristol-Myers Raise Profit Targets

Shares of both drugmakers are higher Thursday.

Eli Lilly



Bristol-Myers Squibb


reported their quarterly results Thursday, and both pharmaceutical companies beat expectations on an adjusted basis and lifted their projections for the full year.

Lilly reported a loss of $466 million, or 43 cents a share, including a $1.48 billion charge for pending investigations of its antipsychotic drug Zyprexa and costs related to asset impairments and restructuring. A year earlier, Lilly earned $926 million, or 85 cents a share.

Factoring out those charges, the company said it earned $1.04 a share, up from 91 cents in the prior year. Revenue increased 14% to $5.2 billion, surpassing the expectations of analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters, who had predicted $1.02 a share, on revenue of $5.09 billion.

Cymbalta revenue increased 40% to $716 million, and sales of Alimta increased 46% to $314 million.

Lilly also said it expects its planned $6.5 billion buyout of



to close in either the fourth quarter of this year or the first quarter of 2009.

As for its forecast, Lilly now expects earnings, excluding items, of between $3.97 and $4.02 a share for the year, up from its previous view of $3.85 to $4. Analysts were predicting $3.95 a share.

Meanwhile, Bristol-Myers reported a profit of $2.58 billion, or $1.29 a share, in its third quarter. A year ago, it earned $848 million, or 43 cents a share. The recent quarter benefited from a $2 billion after-tax gain from the sale of its



Factoring out the gain, Bristol said it earned $588 million, or 46 cents a share. Revenue rose 14% to $5.25 billion. Analysts, on average, had expected 42 cents a share and revenue of $5.23 billion.

Bristol upped its earnings guidance for the year to a range of $1.61 to $1.66 a share, from $1.36 a share to $1.46 a share. That includes a roughly $900 million pretax gain from the sale of its stake in ImClone to Lilly. On an adjusted basis, the company expects a profit between $1.65 and $1.70, which is the upper end of its previous outlook.

Analysts are calling for $1.65 a share, on revenue of $20.85 billion.

Bristol's shares were up 4.6% at $18.34, and Lilly was gaining 3.9% to $33.36.