Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) posted second-quarter results today that beat the consensus forecast on Wall Street — boosting its outlook for the year even as its medical device sales took a big hit from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The New Brunswick, N.J.–based medical device and pharmaceutical giant reported profits of $3.6 billion, or $1.36 per share, on sales of $18.3 billion for the three months ended June 30, 2020, for a bottom-line decline of –34.6% and a sales decline of –10.8% compared with Q4 2017.
Adjusted to exclude one-time items, earnings per share were $1.67, 19¢ ahead of The Street, where analysts were looking EPS of $1.48 on sales of $17.5 billion.
Most of J&J’s Q2 sales hit came from its medical device business, which saw a year-over-year sales decline of –33.9% as the COVID-19 pandemic caused a deferral in medical procedures. Consumer health was down –7.0%, while pharmaceuticals were up 2.1%.
Johnson & Johnson CEO Alex Gorsky in a news release touted the work the company is doing to develop a COVID-19 vaccine: “We know the need is urgent, and every day we commit to doing our part to find a solution for the global good.”
During today’s earnings call, executives added that they hope to start a late-stage human trial for a potential coronavirus vaccine ahead of schedule — in late September.
J&J expects to log adjusted EPS of $7.75–$7.95 this year, up from its prior guidance of $7.50–$7.90, and boosted its top-line outlook to $81.0–$82.5 billion, compared with $79.2–$82.2 previously.
“We often get asked about a second wave of COVID. Our thinking continues to be that, if that occurs, it should not have the same level of global impact that’s been experienced in the last 4 months. This assumption is based on opinions shared by various experts as they believe, as do we, that if this occurs, the world is much better prepared,” J&J CFO Joseph Wolk said during today’s earnings call.
JNJ shares were down slightly in late morning trading. So was MassDevice’s MedTech 100 Index, which includes stocks of the world’s largest medical device companies, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500.