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MedImmune Boosts Second-Quarter Estimate

But it leaves the year alone, prompting weakness in the shares.



raised its earnings outlook for the quarter, on the basis of strong sales, and reconfirmed forecasts for 2003.

The biotechnology company expects earnings per share of 1 to 4 cents per share for its fiscal second quarter ending June 30, up from the previous forecast of a loss of 1 cent to earnings of 1 cent a share. It cited strong sales of Synagis, a respiratory drug, and "timing associated with initiating certain research and development programs."

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MedImmune still expects net earnings between 84 cents and 89 cents a share for the year, with total revenue of $1.08 billion to $1.13 billion -- a 27% to 33% increase over revenue numbers for 2002.

Consensus estimates from a Thomson First Call survey of 22 analysts predict MedImmune will post earnings of 1 cent per share for its second quarter and 91 cents per share for 2003. Last year the company lost 10 cents per share in its second quarter.

The shares were recently down 10 cents, or 0.3%, to $37.48.