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Abbott Laboratories Q4'16 profit rises

Abbott Laboratories reported a year-over-year increase in its fourth-quarter 2016 net earnings from continuing operations.

The result, $971 million, or 65 cents per share, compared to $932 million, or 62 cents per share, in the same quarter of 2015 and met analyst expectations for the period, according to S&P Capital IQ data.

Net earnings from continuing operations exclude after-tax charges of $206 million, or 14 cents per share, for the 2016 fourth quarter and $237 million, or 16 cents per share, for the 2015 fourth quarter.

Abbott generated $5.33 billion in fourth quarter 2016 net sales, an increase of 2.8% over the corresponding quarter of 2015.

On a GAAP basis, the company reported fourth-quarter 2016 net earnings of $798 million, or 53 cents per share, which compares to $767 million, or 51 cents per share, for the same quarter of 2015.

Abbott's full-year 2016 net earnings from continuing operations were largely flat year over year at $3.28 billion. On a per-share basis, the result was up to $2.20 from $2.15 in the same quarter of 2015.

The company's full-year 2016 sales were up 2.2% year over year to $20.85 billion, though GAAP earnings less than halved to $1.40 billion, or 94 cents per share, from $4.42 billion, or $2.92 share, in 2015.

The company will target $2.40 to $2.50 in per-share net earnings from continuing operations during 2017. On a GAAP basis, the company will target an EPS of 92 cents to $1.02.

The S&P Capital IQ consensus normalized EPS estimate for 2017 is $2.43.

First-quarter 2017 net earnings from continuing operations is expected to be 42 cents to 44 cents per share. On a GAAP basis, earnings are expected to be 19 cents to 21 cents per share.