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AstraZeneca share price rises as group reports sales growth

Shares in AstraZeneca (LON:AZN) have climbed higher in London this morning, as the company delivered a rise in product sales for the third quarter of the year. The company, which is betting on its pipeline of new drugs to propel growth, further reaffirmed its sales and earnings guidance for the full year.

As of 09:31 GMT, AstraZeneca’s share price had added 1.83 percent to 5,964.00p, outperforming the broader UK market, with the benchmark FTSE 100 index currently standing 0.20 percent higher at 7,131.36 points. The group’s shares have added just under a fifth to their value over the past year, as compared with about a 5.2-percent dip in the Footsie.

Pharmco posts Q3 results

AstraZeneca announced in a statement today that its product sales had grown eight percent on an actual exchange rate basis, to $5.27 billion, in the third quarter of the year. The group’s total revenue, however, dipped 14 percent to $5.34 billion, dragged down by a hefty drop in the group’s externalisation revenue which includes selling licensing rights to its drugs. The Anglo-Swedish drugmaker’s reported operating profit meanwhile fell 26 percent to $851 million, while core earnings per share (EPS) dipped 37 percent to $0.71.

Reuters noted in its coverage of the news that analysts on average had forecast earnings of $0.72, on revenue of $5.30 billion, according to Refinitiv data.

‘Drivers of growth’

“Today marks an important day for the future of AstraZeneca, with the performance in the quarter and year to date showing what we expect will be the start of a period of sustained growth for years to come,” AstraZeneca’s chief executive Pascal Soriot commented in the statement, adding that the group’s “new medicines are now firmly established as the drivers of growth”.

Going forward, AstraZeneca noted that it continues to expect to deliver its product sales and core EPS guidance for the full year.

As of 10:01 GMT, Thursday, 08 November, AstraZeneca plc share price is 5,966.00p.

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