CSL Ltd., Australia’s biggest pharmaceutical company, reported a 24 percent increase in first- half profit as demand for blood-derived treatments increased.
Net income climbed to $627 million in the six months ended Dec. 31 from $504 million a year earlier, Melbourne-based CSL said today. Sales jumped 11 percent to $2.48 billion.
Demand for immunoglobulin products, which raise infection- fighting antibody levels, and royalties earned from treatments such as Merck & Co.’s Gardasil cervical-cancer vaccine boosted earnings.
Earnings were reported before the start of trading in Australia. CSL rose 0.4 percent to A$57.24 at the close of trading in Sydney yesterday. The shares have advanced 6.2 percent this year, trailing a 6.7 percent increase in Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 index.
CSL surged 68 percent last year, making it the best performing stock in the S&P/ASX 20 (AS26:US), which typically includes the nation’s 20 largest stocks.
The company said full-year earnings-per-share will rise about 24 percent.
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