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What’s Expected for AstraZeneca’s or Eli Lilly’s EPS Growth

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EPS guidance for AstraZeneca and Eli Lilly in fiscal 2019

In its fourth-quarter investor presentation, AstraZeneca (AZN) guided for core EPS of $3.50–$3.70 in fiscal 2019, expecting robust YoY (year-over-year) product sales growth and productivity improvements. The company expects its core operating profit to grow by a mid-teen percentage YoY.

In its fourth-quarter investor presentation, Eli Lilly (LLY) lowered its GAAP EPS guidance for fiscal 2019 from $5.52–$5.62 to $4.57–$4.67, and its non-GAAP EPS guidance from $5.90–$6.00 to $5.55–$5.65. The company has forecast a GAAP and non-GAAP gross margin of 75.0% and 76.5%, respectively, and a non-GAAP gross margin for its pharma business of 80%.

According to the company’s fourth-quarter conference call, Eli Lilly’s non-GAAP EPS rose 20% YoY to $5.55 in fiscal 2018, driven by robust revenue growth, operating expense decline, and solid margin expansion.

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Wall Street’s projections

Wall Street analysts expect AstraZeneca’s non-GAAP EPS to be $1.71, $2.08, and $2.67, in fiscal 2019, fiscal 2020, and fiscal 2021, respectively. These projections imply YoY changes of -1.39%, 21.92%, and 28.21%. They expect Eli Lilly’s non-GAAP EPS to be $5.59, $6.40, and $7.25 in fiscal 2019, fiscal 2020, and fiscal 2021, respectively, implying YoY changes of 0.76%, 14.52%, and 13.25%.

Although Eli Lilly is expected to report higher absolute non-GAAP EPS, AstraZeneca’s non-GAAP EPS are expected to grow faster in fiscal 2020 and fiscal 2021. Next, we’ll discuss AstraZeneca’s and Eli Lilly’s expense projections in fiscal 2019.

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