Source - SMW
AstraZeneca reported product sales growth of 4% to $5,487m for the fourth quarter of 2017 but product sales fell for the full-year 2017 despite progress across the main therapy areas and strong growth in China.

Total revenues of £22,465m declined by 2% for the full year 2017 as falling annual product sales offset improving externalisation revenue.

Product sales for the full year was £20,152m, down 5%, while externalisation revenue increased by 37% at actual exchange rates (38% on a constant currency basis) in the year to $2,313m. 

Reported operating profit fell to $3,677m for the year - down 25% at actual exchange rates and 28% at constant currencies.

Core operating profits of $6,855m were up 2% at actual exchange rates. 

A $617m net benefit was recorded in Q4 2017 to reported profit after tax, reflecting adjustments to deferred taxes in line with the recently reduced US federal income tax rate from 35% to 21%

A $321m benefit to reported and core taxation was recorded in Q4 2017 driven by reductions in tax provisions

The full year dividend was maintained at $2.80 per share.

For the full-year 2018, the company expects product sales to show a low single-digit percentage improvement, while core EPS is expected within the range $3.30 to $3.50. 

Pascal Soriot, Chief Executive Officer, said:

'AstraZeneca's revenues improved over the course of the year, a sign of how our company is steadily turning a corner.'

'Strong commercial execution helped us bring our science to more patients, making the most of our exciting pipeline.' 

'We made encouraging progress across the main therapy areas and delivered strong growth in China.'   'Alongside our CVMD medicines Brilinta and Farxiga reaching blockbuster status, we launched our first Respiratory biologic medicine, Fasenra and new cancer medicines, Imfinzi and Calquence.'   'As well as bringing five new medicines to patients last year, we continued to find more potential uses for existing treatments, including Lynparza and Tagrisso.'      

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