CVS had strong second quarter


POSTED: Wednesday, August 05, 2009

NEW YORK » CVS Caremark, one of the nation's biggest drugstore operators and the owners of Longs Drug Stores, said yesterday its second-quarter profit rose 15 percent, helped by strong pharmacy benefits revenue and a retail sales boost due to a later Easter.

The results beat Wall Street expectations, and the company boosted its outlook for the full year.

It gave no formal outlook for 2010, but its chairman and CEO, Tom Ryan, said he would be “;very disappointed if we didn't have an EPS growth of at least 13 to 15 percent next year.”;

The Woonsocket, R.I., company said it earned $886.5 million, or 60 cents a share, in the three months ended June 30, up from $771.2 million, or 53 cents per share, a year ago. Excluding charges, the company said it earned 65 cents per share — a penny above analysts' estimates.

Meanwhile, revenue rose 18 percent to $24.87 billion from $21.14 billion a year ago and just above Wall Street estimates of $24.41 billion.

Pharmacy services revenue rose 22 percent to $13 billion, partly because of the addition of RxAmerica pharmacy benefits-management business, which the company acquired as part of the Longs buyout in October. Looking ahead, the company raised its outlook for full-year profit from continuing operations to between $2.59 and $2.64 a share, up from a prior range of $2.55 to $2.63 per share.