Biogen Gains After Fourth-Quarter Sales Top Estimates

Biogen Idec Inc. reported fourth-quarter profit that exceeded analysts’ estimates after adjusting for a correction in tax accounting related to a Denmark facility, as sales of its multiple sclerosis drugs rose.

Earnings excluding one-time items were $1.40 a share, Weston, Massachusetts-based Biogen said today in a statement. Without the 12-cent tax expense, adjusted profit beat by 6 cents the average of 25 analysts’ estimates compiled by Bloomberg. The accounting correction added $29 million in expenses.

Revenue rose 6.9 percent to $1.42 billion, topping analysts’ $1.39 billion average estimate. The company forecast 2013 earnings, adjusted for one-time items, of $7.15 to $7.25 a share. Analysts had estimated $7.25 a share, on average.

“Revenue and EPS guidance is in-line with the street,” Mark Schoenebaum, an analyst with ISI Group, wrote in a note to clients today. Fourth-quarter “revenue results look generally strong.”

Biogen gained 2.6 percent to $149.99 at the close in New York, the biggest one-day increase since Nov. 20. The shares has increased 27 percent in the past 12 months.

Net income declined 2.7 percent to $292.1 million, or $1.23 a share, from $300.2 million, or $1.22, a year earlier, the company said.

Sales of Biogen’s top-seller, the multiple sclerosis drug Avonex, increased 7.1 percent to $753.2 million, while those for Tysabri, another drug for MS, increased 9.6 percent to $295.2 million.

Biogen said it is prepared to begin selling a pill for MS, BG-12, in the second quarter under the brand name Tecfidera, and is expecting to start selling two hemophilia medicines late this year.

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