GSK expects full-year earnings to be at lower end of its forecast


Adds details on forecast

Oct 28 (Reuters) - Britain's GSK GSK.L said on Wednesday it expects full-year adjusted earnings to come in at the lower end of its forecast as the COVID-19 pandemic disrupts vaccination rates, especially for its blockbuster shingles vaccine.

Shingrix, the biggest driver of sales growth last year, saw its quarterly revenue fall 30% from a year earlier to 374 million pounds, coming in 18.5% below market expectations.

The drugmaker said the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted its businesses, particularly its vaccines unit, during the first nine months of 2020.

GSK said it now expects 2020 profit to be at the lower end of its forecast of a 1%-4% drop, which did not include any potential impact from the coronavirus crisis.

The drugmaker, however, said it had seen a recovery in vaccination rates, including adult immunisation rates in the United States returning to prior year levels in the last month of the third quarter.

For the quarter, the company reported adjusted earnings of 35.6 pence per share and sales of 8.67 billion pounds.

Analysts on average expected third-quarter adjusted earnings of 30.4 pence per share and sales of 8.77 billion pounds, according to a company-compiled consensus of 16 analysts.

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(Reporting by Ankur Banerjee in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

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