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Writedown Hits Medicis

It swings to a loss.

Medicis (MRX) swung to a third-quarter loss as the latest period was hit by a big asset writedown.

The Scottsdale, Ariz., maker of skin care drugs lost $21 million, or 38 cents a share, for the quarter ended Sept. 30, reversing the year-ago profit of $13 million, or 20 cents a share. Revenue rose to $90 million from $83 million a year earlier.

Excluding a $53 million pretax writedown of its Loprox and Esoterica products and share-based compensation costs, Medicis made 28 cents a share on an adjusted basis, even with a year ago and a nickel ahead of the Thomson Financial analyst consensus estimate.

The company said it expects to make 33 cents a share on an adjusted basis for the fourth quarter on revenue of $105 million. Analysts were looking for 32 cents on $102 million.

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Shares rose $2.49 to $39.08 in regular action Wednesday before being halted after hours.