Updated from 10:04 a.m. EST
Teva Pharmaceutical Industries
raised its full-year earnings forecast after posting third-quarter profits that charged past Wall Street's estimates.
Earnings for the year are now expected to be in a range of $2.25 to $2.35 a share instead of the previous estimate of $2.15 to $2.25.
However, Teva's stock fell as its third-quarter sales slipped below analysts' predictions. The world's largest generic-drug company also said full-year revenue would be short of the consensus expectation.
At the 4 p.m. EST close of trading, Teva lost 50 cents, or 1.5%, to $32.80. Volume was four times heavier than normal.
Teva earned $606.4 million, or 74 cents a share, for the three months ended Sept. 30. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call predicted a profit of 63 cents. Analysts were looking for sales of $2.33 billion, but Teva recorded $2.29 billion.
For the same period last year, Teva earned $267.1 million, or 40 cents a share, on revenue of $1.32 billion.
The big advance in sales was mainly attributable to Teva's acquisition of Ivax that was completed earlier this year. Teva's sales also were boosted by many big-selling brand-name drugs going off patent this year, such as the cholesterol drugs Zocor, from
and Pravachol from
and the antidepressant Zoloft from
Calling 2006 an "extraordinary" year, Israel Makov, the president and CEO, said next year will be a "challenge" because there will be more generic competition for many of Teva's products.
Makov added that this year's sales will be "closer to $8.4 billion than $8.5 billion." The average analyst forecast of $8.48 billion was based in part on Teva's
prediction in August that full-year sales would be $8.5 billion.
Makov didn't make a prediction for next year, saying he would wait until February when Teva announces fourth-quarter results.
In addition to an influx of new generic drugs, Teva's third quarter was aided by $354 million in sales for Copaxone, a drug for multiple sclerosis. The U.S. market grew by 10% to $226 million. Sales elsewhere climbed 26% to $128 million.