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Novo Nordisk books 7% drop in Q2 profit, raises 2019 outlook

Novo Nordisk A/S, best known for its diabetes therapies, raised its outlook for the full year despite seeing a 7% drop in second-quarter earnings.

The Denmark-based company booked second-quarter net profit of 9.60 billion Danish kroner, or 4.03 kroner per share, down from 10.34 billion kroner, or 4.26 kroner per share, in the year-ago period.

The S&P Global Market Intelligence consensus normalized EPS estimate for the second quarter was 3.96 kroner.

Net sales for the quarter were 30.04 billion kroner, up 10% year over year from 27.41 billion kroner. Sales from the company's diabetes and obesity segment were 25.24 billion kroner, up 10% year over year, while sales from the biopharmaceutical segment rose 10% year over year to 4.8 billion kroner.

Research and development costs rose 8% on a yearly basis to 3.56 billion kroner.

For the first half, the company booked a net profit of 20.04 billion kroner, or 8.39 kroner per share, down from 21.09 billion kroner, or 8.66 kroner per share.

Net sales for the half were 59.33 billion kroner, up from 54.34 billion kroner a year earlier.

The company raised its outlook for 2019, and now expects sales growth of 4% to 6% at constant exchange rates, or CER, for the full year. Novo Nordisk previously expected sales to grow 2% to 5% at CER.

The drugmaker also expects operating profit to grow 4% to 6% at CER in 2019, up from its previously anticipated range of 2% to 6%.

As of Aug. 8, US$1 was equivalent to 6.66 Danish kroner.