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Dow Jones Newswires: AstraZeneca lifts guidance after forecast-beating profit and sales

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AstraZeneca PLC on Thursday lifted its guidance for the full year after reporting a swing to net profit and higher sales for the third quarter of the year, which both beat consensus expectations.

The Anglo-Swedish pharma major
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swung to pretax profit of $922 million from a pretax loss of $2 billion the year prior, when it took hits from fair-value adjustments to Alexion inventories after acquiring the company.

After tax, profit was $1.64 billion compared with a loss of $1.65 billion the year prior. Analysts had expected the company to post a net profit of $629 million.

Core earnings per share were $1.67, up 55% from the prior-year figure, beating analysts’ expectations of $1.52.

Revenue rose to $11 billion in the quarter from $9.87 billion the year prior, beating analysts’ expectations of $10.84 billion.

The company raised its outlook on core earnings per share, saying it expects the metric to increase by a high-20s to low-30s percentage, up from a previous outlook of growth in the mid-to-high 20s percentage. Total revenue is still expected to increase by a low-20s percentage as the company had previously forecast.

Write to Cecilia Butini at cecilia.butini@wsj.com

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