Feb. 12--Hospira Inc. said its fourth-quarter profit improved six-fold from a year ago as supply and pricing improved on its specialty injectable drugs.
Net income rose to $33.5 million, or 20 cents a share, from $5.3 million, or 3 cents a share, in the same quarter a year ago. Revenue fell 1.3 percent to $1.08 billion in the quarter, but the Lake Forest-based maker of injectable drugs and intravenous pumps still beat analysts' estimate of $1.06 billion.
The company blamed the decline on a shipping hold on most of the company's medication infusion devices, a fall in sales of a cancer drug and a unfavorable foreign exchange rates.
Adjusted for certain items, net income fell to 51 cents a share from 55 cents in the fourth quarter of 2012, beating Wall Street by a penny.
Sales of its specialty injectable drugs rose 5.2 percent to $732.2 million in the quarter, partially offsetting a 17.5 drop of medication management products, largely result of problems with its medication infusion devices.
Hospira, under scrutiny from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for a series of quality issues, said in May it would phase out several of its drug infusion pumps as part of a streamlining effort aimed at improving quality.
It said it would spend up to $350 million to do away with its Symbiq, GemStar and older Plum brand pumps between 2013 and 2015 and invest in the development of replacements.
Shares of Hospira are up nearly 27 percent over the last 12 months. The stock closed at $44.26 on Tuesday.
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