April 24, 2012 at 10:41 AM EDT
Novartis Q1 Profit Tumbles 18% on Generic Competition, Manufacturing Problems (NVS)

Drug maker Novartis AG (NVS) on Tuesday said its first quarter earnings fell 18% from last year, hurt by competition from new generic drugs as well as production problems in the U.S.

The Swiss company reported first quarter net income of $2.33 billion, down from $2.82 billion in the year-ago period. Net sales fell 2% from last year to $13.74 billion.

Those results were largely in-line with what analysts had predicted.

On a sour note, Novartis said it expects full-year 2012 earnings to come in below 2011 levels.

Novartis shares fell 85 cents, or -1.5%, in morning trading Tuesday.

The Bottom Line
We recently began recommending shares of Novartis (NVS) since Mar.21, when the stock price was at $55.46. The company has a 4.42% dividend yield, based on last night’s closing stock price of $55.62.

Novartis AG (NVS) is a “Recommended” dividend stock, holding a Dividend.com DARS™ Rating of 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Be sure to visit our complete recommended list of the Best Dividend Stocks, as well as a detailed explanation of our ratings system here.

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