) partly on the biotechnology firms's accelerating product sales. The company said its expects earnings per share to rise 20% in 2002 and sees compounded annual growth rate in the low-20% range for sales and earnings per share through 2005.
Analyst Michael King Jr. raised 2002 earnings per share estimate to $1.48 from $1.38 amd revenues to $4.65 billion from $4.58 billion on accelerating product sales growth and lower effective tax. This compares with $1.40 a share consensus. King sees most of the 2002 product sales growth coming from its Epogen/Aranesp franchise. While the company is not assuming Aranesp approval in oncology in 2002, it believes this is overly conservative and looks for sales in oncology to comprise a growing portion of product revenues in the second half of 2002. King reiterated his buy rating with a $77 target.