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Agilent Q3 Revenues Drop 1 Percent

NEW YORK – Agilent Technologies reported after the close of the market on Tuesday that its third quarter 2020 revenues fell 1 percent year over year.

The firm noted that core revenues, which excludes the impact of currency and acquisitions and divestitures in the past 12 months, fell about 3 percent in Q3.

For the three months ended July 31, the firm's revenues fell to $1.26 billion from $1.27 billion in Q3 2019, beating Wall Street analysts' average estimate of $1.21 billion.

During the quarter revenues for the diagnostic and genomic group (DGG) dropped about 8 percent to $241 million from $263 million in the year-ago quarter. Core revenues were down also 8 percent year over year. The life sciences and applied markets group (LSAG) saw a 2 percent revenue rise to $557 million from $544 million. The group's revenues declined 4 percent on a core basis.

Agilent's CrossLab group (ACG) fell 1 percent year over year to $463 million from $467 million. Core revenues were trimmed 1 percent also, the firm said.

On a conference call with analysts following the release of earnings, Agilent Preisdent and CEO Mike McMullen noted that on a geographic basis, China led the way in Q3 with revenues up 10 percent. However, European revenues fell 5 percent while the US had a 10 percent decrease in revenue.

"While the world's economies are expected to recover at different rates in the fourth quarter, we remain focused on growth and investing for the future, while effectively managing expenses," he said in a statement.

During the quarter, Agilent launched its Agilent Infinity II Clinical Edition K6460S instrument as a class II device in China.

Agilent also partnered with liquid chromatography firm Evosep in June to develop high-throughput workflows for clinical proteomics.

In Q3, Agilent reported income of $199 million, or $.64 per share, compared to net income of $191.0 million, or $.60 per share, in Q3 2019. On an adjusted basis, the firm reported earnings of $.78 per share for the quarter, beating analysts' consensus estimate of $.66 per share.

The firm's R&D costs dropped about 9 percent year over year to $92 million from $101 million, while its SG&A expenses fell 5 percent to $347 million from $366 million in the prior year.

Agilent ended the quarter with $1.36 billion in cash and cash equivalents.

Looking ahead, McMullen said on the call that "while there is still significant uncertainty regarding the continued pace of recovery, we expect the July trend of gradual improvement in our business to continue into Q4."

"China will continue to be a positive story for us and lead the return to growth. Europe is beginning to trend upward, and the Americans are expected to improve, with a slower rate than China and Europe," he said.

In Wednesday morning trading on the New York Stock Exchange, Agilent's shares were up 1 percent at $99.23.