AP News

News Summary: Charges, sales slump cut Merck net

DOWN QUARTER: The drugmaker Merck reported its fourth-quarter profit fell 14 percent to $781 million, or 26 cents per share. Excluding restructuring and other charges, it earned $2.6 billion. Its adjusted results missed analysts' forecasts by a penny per share.

SALES SLUMP: Generic competition, unfavorable exchange rates and other factors hurt sales, which dipped 4 percent to $11.32 billion.

HOT NEWS: Merck & Co. announced partnerships to test its promising cancer drug, MK-3475, in combination with cancer drugs being developed by Pfizer, Amgen and Incyte. That temporarily drove shares to a six-year high of $55.20.

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