The company, whose profit topped expectations for the 4th straight quarter, cut its 2014 earnings forecast to $4.86-$4.89 per share to exclude gains from its vaccine business that it sold to Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) about 3 months ago.
Baxter had earlier expected to earn $5.10-$5.20 per share, before special items. The discontinued vaccines franchise business earned 4¢ per share, excluding items, for the 3rd quarter ended Sept. 30. Net income fell to $468 million, or 86¢ per share, from $544 million, or 99¢ per share, a year earlier. Excluding items, the company earned $1.35 per share. Net sales grew 13% to $4.2 billion.
Analysts on average had expected earnings of $1.31 per share, excluding items, on revenue of $4.2 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
Sales in its medical products business – which includes intravenous fluid systems, dialysis, biosurgery and some specialty pharmaceuticals such as anesthesia and nutrition – were up 17% to $2.5 billion in the third quarter.
"Robust growth in the U.S. was led by double-digit gains in peritoneal dialysis patients, as well as strong sales of intravenous and nutritional therapies," the company said.
Excluding revenue from Gambro, a Swiss company that Baxter bought last year, medical products sales grew 4%.
The company said plans to spin off its biotechnology operations next year remained on track. BAX shares were down 1.8% to $67.14 apiece as of about 9:50 a.m. Eastern today.