Stryker Rises as Fourth-Quarter Profit Surges: Detroit Mover

Stryker Corp., a maker of artificial hips and knees, climbed 4 percent after fourth-quarter profit rose on higher sales of medical and neurotechnology products.

Stryker gained $2.12 to $55.06 at 4:11 p.m. in New York, the biggest increase in five weeks. The shares of the Kalamazoo, Michigan-based company fell 5.7 percent in the past 12 months.

Fourth-quarter earnings increased 36 percent to $401 million, or $1.05 a share, as sales of medical and surgical products, including hospital beds, rose 11 percent and revenue from neurotechnology and spine products surged 47 percent, the company said in a statement yesterday. Stryker reiterated that earnings excluding one-time items are forecast to grow at “double-digit levels” in 2012, without being more specific. Sales may climb as much as 6.5 percent on a constant currency basis, Stryker said.

“We believe that 2012 guidance is conservative,” wrote Michael Matson, an analyst with Mizuho Securities USA Inc. in New York, in a note to investors today. Stryker also expects to offset a 2.3 percent medical device excise tax that is scheduled to take effect next year, he said. “We’re skeptical but if this proves true then 2013 earnings per share growth should significantly outpace peers,” Matson wrote.

Stryker acquired Boston Scientific Corp.’s neurovascular business on Jan. 3, 2011, bolstering its range of products to treat aneurysms, clear clogged arteries in the brain and prevent strokes.

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