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AstraZeneca plc (AZN) ADR Each Representing 0.5 Ord Shares

Sell:$66.99 Buy:$67.02 Change: $1.09 (1.65%)
Market closed |  Prices as at close on 29 June 2022 | Switch to live prices |
Change: $1.09 (1.65%)
Market closed |  Prices as at close on 29 June 2022 | Switch to live prices |
Change: $1.09 (1.65%)
Market closed |  Prices as at close on 29 June 2022 | Switch to live prices |
The selling price currently displayed is higher than the buying price. This can occur temporarily for a variety of reasons; shortly before the market opens, after the market closes or because of extraordinary price volatility during the trading day.

HL comment (9 November 2017)

Astra continues to rely on externalisation revenues from the sale of non-core assets to support revenue growth, with product sales declining. Core operating profit in the quarter rose 9% to $1.9bn. Management expect full year earnings per share to be towards the favourable end of previous guidance, falling by a low to mid-teens percentage.

The shares rose 2.8% following the announcement.

Our View

HL View to follow

Third Quarter Results (Constant Exchange Rates)

Product sales of $4.9bn in the third quarter were 3% lower than this time last year, 2% at constant exchange rates (CER). However, total revenue rose 10% at CER, as the group delivered $1.4bn of externalisation revenue.

Externalisation benefitted from the deal with MSD to cooperate on cancer treatment Lynparza, which generated a $997m upfront payment. The deal has the potential to generate up to $6.9bn of revenues in the future if certain milestones are met.

Cost control remains impressive, with year-to-date Core R&D expenditure falling 2% and Selling, General & Administrative costs down 5%, hitting $4bn and $5.7bn respectively.

Astra's growth platforms grew 4% year on year, accounting for 60% of total revenue. The new Cardiovascular and Metabolic diseases and new Oncology businesses grew particularly well. In Q3, Oncology revenues rose 73% higher, with COPD treatment Brillinta growing 36%.

Astra's pipeline has made good progress in the quarter, with seven drugs receiving regulatory approval, mainly in cardiology and oncology, while the group has also reported positive results from two clinical trials.

The group finished the period with net debt of $12.1bn, compared to $13.4bn this time last year.

Unless otherwise stated estimates, including prospective yields, are a consensus of analyst forecasts provided by Thomson Reuters. These estimates are not a reliable indicator of future performance. Yields are variable and not guaranteed. Investments rise and fall in value so investors could make a loss.

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