BD sees Q2 earnings fall 6.7%, raises outlook for the year

Becton, Dickinson ($BDX) saw its profits dip in the second quarter, but still beat expectations. And as with other healthcare companies, it saw growth in emerging markets. The company also raised its outlook for the year from $5.60 to $5.70 a share to between $5.68 and $5.73.

For the quarter, the company reported net income of about $291 million, down 6.7% from last year. But it also saw revenues of $1.99 billion, representing an increase of 3.6% from the prior-year period.

Second-quarter revenues in the U.S. were $848 million, up 2.2% over last year. However, international sales were $1.14 billion, representing an increase of 4.6% versus a year earlier, and the company pointed to emerging markets as a key factor in this growth.

The company also saw growth in its diagnostics segment. Worldwide revenues for that during the quarter were $630 million, representing an increase of 4.1% versus last year--and despite a light flu season. The segment's growth was influenced by strong sales in the preanalytical systems unit and in women's health and cancer.

When asked during the earnings call about the impact of Hologic's ($HOLX) buyout of Gen-Probe ($GPRO) that was announced this week, Tom Polen, president of the company's diagnostics systems business, said he didn't really expect much change. He said Gen-Probe has been in play for a while. Furthermore, BD has had its integrated molecular cytology strategy in women's health for some time, and Hologic apparently sees value in a similar approach, as reflected by the buy.

After the end of the quarter, which ended March 31, Corning ($GLW) announced that it would buy BD's Discovery Labware unit for roughly $730 million in cash. The acquisition is expected to be completed this year. Analysts say the sale will take away a "cash cow" for BD, but will also allow it to concentrate on areas with higher growth potential, Dow Jones reports.

As the news service further notes, the company's shares closed yesterday at $78.45, and its stock is up 5% this year.

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