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Lilly 1Q profit rises on higher sales, flat costs

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[April 20, 2009]  NEW YORK (AP) -- Drugmaker Eli Lilly & Co. said Monday its first-quarter profit rose 24 percent on a boost in sales of the antidepressant Cymbalta and the insulin Humalog as costs stayed flat.

Higher prices for several drugs helped revenue, the company said.

Recurrent best-sellers brought in nearly half of the company's revenue during the quarter, Cymbalta sales rising 17 percent to $709.3 million and Humalog sales rising 11 percent to $450.6 million. Sales of the antipsychotic Zyprexa, Lilly's top seller, were flat at $1.12 billion.

Lilly earned $1.31 billion, or $1.20 per share, compared with profit of $1.06 billion, or 97 cents per share, during the same period a year earlier. Revenue rose 5 percent to $5.05 billion.

Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters expected profit of 99 cents per share on revenue of $5.05 billion.

Meanwhile, the company said its overall costs remained flat, on a mix of lower marketing expenses and higher research and development expenses.

Looking ahead, the company backed full-year profit guidance between $4 and $4.25 per share. Analysts forecast $4.14 per share.

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



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