Both AbbVie (NYSE:ABBV) and Ford (NYSE:F) had earnings calls today (read the full transcripts here and here). Below are my takeaways from both.
Little Upside to AbbVie Stock Price
AbbVie made comments on its call about hepatitis C pricing, which could be interpreted as more supportive of pricing for hepatitis C drugs than the market currently expects. Specifically, AbbVie noted the following:
- Convenience is not an important factor when choosing a drug.
- AbbVie's drug can compete on its merits.
- The company views hepatitis C as a long-term market.
- AbbVie's next generation drugs should be more competitive with Gilead's (NASDAQ:GILD) Sovaldi.
Ford Sees Growth
If it is possible to post a profit decline and miss earnings expectations while having a great quarter, Ford did that today. Weather and warranty costs negatively impacted US results, but Ford grew by double-digit rates in the largest auto markets in the world: China (No. 1) and Europe (No. 2). In particular, China not only turned profitable, but operating margins in the region came in at 11%, which is three times higher than the market expected. Management indicated that 2014 pricing in the US will likely be stronger than it initially expected, and if Ford continues to gain share in its fastest growing and most profitable market (China), the company is positioned to deliver better-than-expected results through 2014 and into 2015.
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