Johnson & Johnson (J&J) has announced a robust financial performance for the fourth quarter (Q4) of 2023, with net earnings reaching $4.1bn – a substantial 28% increase from $3.2bn in the same quarter of the previous year.

The company’s reported sales growth stood at 7.3%, escalating to $21.4bn from $19.9bn in Q4 2022.

Excluding the impact of its Covid-19 vaccine, operational growth was an impressive 10.9%.

Earnings per share (EPS) for Q4 2023 were $1.70, marking a 39.3% rise from $1.22 in the prior year’s quarter.

Adjusted EPS also saw an 11.7% increase to $2.29 from $2.05 in the fourth quarter of 2022.

In the US, regional sales grew by 11% to $12bn from $10.8bn in the same quarter of the previous year.

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Worldwide sales saw a 7.3% increase on a reported basis. The Innovative Medicine segment of J&J generated sales of $13.72bn for the quarter, up 4.2% from $13.16bn in the same quarter of the previous year.

Sales from the MedTech and Worldwide segments also reported increases of 13.3% and 7.3%, respectively.

The growth in the Innovative Medicine segment was propelled by key pharmaceutical products such as DARZALEX (daratumumab), ERLEADA (apalutamide), TECVAYLI (teclistamab-cqyv) and CARVYKTI (ciltacabtagene autoleucel) in oncology.

STELARA (ustekinumab) and TREMFYA (guselkumab) in immunology, along with SPRAVATO (esketamine) in neuroscience, also contributed to the segment’s performance.

For 2024, the company forecasts operational sales growth of 5–6% and adjusted operational EPS of $10.55–10.75 – a rise of 7.4% at the mid-point of the year.

Johnson & Johnson chairman and CEO Joaquin Duato stated: “Johnson & Johnson’s full-year 2023 results reflect the breadth and competitiveness of our business and our relentless focus on delivering for patients.

“We have entered 2024 from a position of strength, and I am confident in our ability to lead the next wave of health innovation.”

In January 2024, the company received full approval from the US Food and Drug Administration for BALVERSA (erdafitinib) to treat locally advanced or metastatic urothelial carcinoma with susceptible fibroblast growth factor receptor 3 genetic alterations.