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Quest Diagnostics Posts 6 Percent Revenue Increase for Q3

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Quest Diagnostics today reported that its third quarter revenues climbed 6 percent year over year as the firm beat analysts' expectations on the top and bottom line.

The clinical lab and diagnostics information services firm reported total revenues of $1.90 billion for the three months ended Sept. 30, up from $1.79 billion for the third quarter of 2013 and above consensus analysts' estimate of $1.87 billion.

It said that diagnostic information services revenue was up around 7 percent year over year, while test volume increased around 8 percent. Acquisitions contributed approximately 7 percent to revenues in the quarter and reduced revenue per requisition by approximately 1 percent.

Quest posted net income of $129 million, or $.88 per share, compared to $405 million, or $2.68 per share, in Q3 2013. Its EPS on an adjusted basis was $1.10, beating the consensus Wall Street estimate of 1.08.

Last year's Q3 included a one-time approximately $300 million gain, or $1.97 per share, on the sale of Quest's IP royalty rights for cancer drug ibrutinib.

Quest's SG&A spending increased 5 percent to $446 million from $423 million. The firm also recorded $24 million in amortization of intangible assets compared to $20 million in Q3 2013.

Quest finished the quarter with $170 million in cash and cash equivalents.

The company said that it expects FY 2014 revenue growth to be around 3.5 percent versus its previous guidance of between 2.5 percent and 3.5 percent. It also narrowed its guidance for adjusted EPS to a range of $4.03 to $4.07 from a previous range of $4.00 to $4.10. Analysts, on average, expect EPS of $4.05.

Steve Rusckowski, president and CEO of Quest, said the firm "continued to see improvements in underlying trends in pricing, volume, and revenue."

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