Well it’s been a pretty dismal couple of weeks for the markets with many companies (particularly financials) releasing earning reports that surprised even the bearish of analysts. However, despite all the doom and gloom there are a few positive results out there.
Yesterday Johnson & Johnson announced record sales of $16 billion (a 16.6% increase from Q4 2006) and a 10.8% increase in fourth quarter EPS. Excluding special items their fourth quarter EPS was $0.88 beating the analyst consensus of $0.86 a share. Although these aren’t blockbuster results they are exactly what I’d expect from JNJ, consistent and steady. Even more importantly I think it’s important to look at where the growth is coming from:
U.S Sales: Up 37.6% to $1.63 billion from $1.18 billion
International Sales: Up 57.9% to $2.18 billion from $1.38 billion
Total Growth: Up 48.5%
(The huge increase in this sector is partially a result of the acquisition of Pfizer’s consumer division.)
U.S Sales: Up 2% from last year's $3.87 billion
International Sales: Up 17.8% to $2.45 billion from $2.08 billion a year ago
Total Growth: Up 7.5%
MEDICAL DEVICES & DIAGNOSTICS SEGMENT
U.S Sales: 6.8% to $2.66 billion from $2.49 billion
International Sales: Up 15.4% to $3.09 billion from $2.68 billion
Total Growth: Up 11.3%
The results are certainly indicative of where the growth is for JNJ (international) and also one of the reasons I originally initiated a position in JNJ.
The company also gave guidance for 2008 and indicated that their EPS would be in the range of $4.39 - $4.44. This represents an increase of 5.8% to 7% not bad considering it looks like we're heading into a recession.
(Disclaimer: I currently have a position in JNJ but am not a financial advisor. Please do your own research and make your opinions on when to buy or sell. Nothing I say should be bastardized or construed in any way to be advice)