J&J Q3 sales rise 7 pct. led by its Remicade drug

Johnson & Johnson reported Q3 sales rose 6.8 percent to $16 billion over last year's $14.98 billion. Net earnings were down 6.3 percent to $3.2 billion, or $1.15 per share, from $3.4 billion, or $1.23 per share.

Its top pharmaceutical sales driver was Remicade, a biologic developed by the Philadelphia region's own Centocor, which J&J acquired in 1999. Sales of Remicade, used to treat arthritis, Crohn's disease and psoriasis, rose to $1.41 billion in the third quarter, up from $1.23 billion for the same quarter last year.

Johnson & Johnson said sales of its U.S. over-the-counter medicines were "significantly impacted" by the halt of manufacturing at its McNeil Consumer Healthcare factory in Fort Washington in April 2010. The Food and Drug Administration documented many manufacturing and quality control problems at that plant, which made Tylenol, Motrin and other medicines.

For the third quarter, U.S. sales of its OTC/Nutritionals consumer segment were $332 million, down 24.2 percent from $438 million for the three months ended Sept. 30, 2010.

Still, as Reuters reports, J&J's results did beat Wall Street analyst forecasts by 3 cents per share.

In other local business news, retail chain A.C. Moore Arts & Crafts said that Sbar's Inc. has begun its previously announced tender offer to acquire all of A.C. Moore's shares for $1.60 per share. The Moorestown-based Sbar's is a large distributor of arts and crafts merchandise and intends to take private the 134-store A.C. Moore chain in a deal valued at $41 million.