Johnson & Johnson has reported a notable increase in its financial performance for the first quarter (Q1) of 2024, with net earnings reaching $5.3bn compared to a loss of $491m in the same period of the previous year.

Its first quarter reported sales grew 2.3% to $21.4bn from $20.8bn in Q1 2023, with operational growth of 3.9% and an adjusted operational growth of 4%.

Excluding the impact of its Covid-19 vaccine, adjusted operational growth for Q1 2024 was 7.7%.

Earnings per share (EPS) both diluted and basic saw a significant rise to $2.20 from a loss of $0.19 per share in the previous year.

Adjusted EPS on a non-GAAP [generally accepted accounting principles] diluted basis grew by 12.4% to $2.7 from $2.4 in Q1 2023.

In the US, sales surged by 7.8% to $11.6bn compared to $10.7bn in Q1 2023 while worldwide sales experienced a 2.3% increase to $21.3bn versus $20.8bn in Q1 2023.

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The growth in innovative medicine worldwide operational sales, excluding the Covid-19 vaccine, was 8.3%, driven by products such as Darzalex, Erleada, Carvykti and Tecvayli.

The medtech segment also reported a 6.3% growth in worldwide operational sales, primarily due to strong performance in electrophysiology products and Abiomed in the cardiovascular category, as well as wound closure products in the general surgery category.

Looking ahead, Johnson & Johnson raised its full-year 2024 operational sales and adjusted operational EPS guidance.

The company now expects operational sales to be between $88.7bn and $89.1bn and adjusted diluted EPS to be between $10.6 and $10.7, with the midpoint projections at $88.9bn and $10.6 respectively.

Johnson & Johnson chairman and CEO Joaquin Duato stated: “Johnson & Johnson’s solid first quarter performance reflects our sharpened focus and the progress in our portfolio and pipeline.

“Our impact across the full spectrum of healthcare is unique in our industry, and the milestones achieved this quarter reinforce our position as an innovation powerhouse.”

This month, the FDA approved Johnson and Johnson and Legend Biotech’s chimeric antigen receptor T cell therapy Carvykti (ciltacabtagene autoleucel) as a second-line therapy for patients with multiple myeloma.