Updated from 10:57 a.m. EDT

Sales of popular drugs elevated the earnings of three top pharmaceutical companies on Tuesday, either surpassing or meeting Wall Street's expectations.

Pharmacia

( PHA) -- in its first full quarter since the April merger of drugmaker

Pharmacia & Upjohn

and life sciences entity

Monsanto

-- said that for the second quarter ended June 30, earnings from continuing operations rose to $622 million, or 47 cents a diluted share, from $518 million, or 40 cents a share, a year earlier. The results include $227 million in merger and restructuring costs. The consensus estimate of analysts polled by

First Call/Thomson Financial

was 47 cents.

Sales from continuing operations rose 16% to $5.03 billion, with pharmaceutical sales up 18% to $3.18 billion and agricultural sales up 13% to $1.85 billion. Blockbuster arthritis drug Celebrex led the pharmaceutical division, rising 103% with sales of $630 million. Glaucoma treatment Xalatan recorded a 37% increase to $151 million and cancer treatment Camptosar recorded a 71% increase to $111 million.

The company, based in Peapack, N.J., said that a spinoff of 20% of the Monsanto agricultural business is on track.

Pharmacia finished up 2 5/8, or 5%, at 55 5/8. They are up 48% this year as of Monday's close because investors believe the merger will result in anticipated cost savings and accelerated growth. The company asserted that investor's faith was not misplaced.

"We continue to be confident of delivering on our merger commitment to achieve our stated goal of a 20% plus annual compounded growth rate in earnings per share from the 1999 base through 2002," said Fred Hassan, chief executive of Pharmacia, in a statement. "As we have said previously, individual quarters will fall above or below that goal but our overall growth expectations are unchanged."

Schering-Plough

( SGP), maker of the biggest-selling allergy medicine in the world, confirmed the earnings figures released by Chairman and Chief Executive Richard Kogan two weeks ago.

For the second quarter ended June 30, net income rose to $634 million, or 43 cents a diluted share, from $547 million, or 37 cents a share, a year earlier. The consensus estimate of analysts polled by First Call/Thomson Financial was 41 cents.

Revenue rose 8% to $2.6 billion from $2.5 billion a year ago, with worldwide pharmaceutical sales growing by 8% to $2.2 billion. Claritin, the most-prescribed antihistamine in the world, posted a 9% growth in sales to $897 million. Sales of Intron A, an antiviral and anticancer agent, increased 31% to $361 million.

Worldwide sales of health products for animals rose 1% to $174 million. Foot care products grew 4% to $105 million. Over-the-counter drugs rose 8% to $46 million. Sun care products rose 8% to $77 million.

The company, based in Madison, N.J., also reiterated that earnings per share for the year would be in line with the current consensus estimate of $1.64.

Shares of Schering-Plough closed down 2, or 4.4%, at 43 1/4.

SmithKline Beecham

(SBH) - Get Report

, which plans to merge with its British rival

Glaxo-Wellcome

( GLX), said that for the second quarter ended June 30, profit after tax rose to 362 million pounds, or 5.9 pence a diluted share, from 303 million pounds, or 5 pence a share, a year earlier. The consensus estimate of analysts polled by

Bloomberg News

was 5.7 pence.

Revenue fell to 2.08 billion pounds from 2.16 billion pounds a year ago, largely because of the sales of the company's health care business. Sales were led by antidepressant Paxil/Seroxat, which rose 7% to $547 million; antibiotic Augmentin, which rose 8% to $392 million; and vaccines, which rose 16% to $340 million.

The merger has been delayed a month, to Sept. 25, as the U.S.

Federal Trade Commission

reviews the details. The review may not be completed in time for a British court hearing on the merger on Aug. 17.

Shares of SmithKline Beecham finished up 1/4, or 0.45, at 61 3/16.