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Merck's New Drugs, Cost Management to Fuel Growth in 2017

On Nov 24, we issued an updated report on Merck & Co., Inc. MRK.

On Oct 25, Merck reported results for the third quarter of 2016, wherein both earnings and revenues beat estimates. The top line also improved year over year on the back of additional sales in Japan which was driven by the timing of shipments before the implementation of a resource planning system in the following quarter. Higher-than-expected sales of Gardasil and delayed entry of Cubicin generics in the quarter also added to sales. Importantly, the leading drug maker Merck raised both its sales and earnings outlook for the year.

Merck is striving to bring new products to market. New products, especially Keytruda, is expected to contribute to the top line. The latest FDA approval of Keytruda for the first-line treatment of metastatic lung cancer should drive the drug’s sales. Keytruda is the first anti-PD-1 therapy to gain FDA approval and is being studied for more than 30 types of cancer.

Moreover, Merck’s progress on its...