Mon. Dec 4th, 2023

Kenilworth, NJ (AP) — Merck posted a big fourth-quarter loss due to a hefty charge and much higher spending on research, production and overhead. The company also announced Ken Frazier, its longtime chief executive, will retire on July 1.

Frazier, Merck’s CEO for the past decade, will be replaced by Rob Davis, the chief financial officer, the company said Thursday. Frazier will become executive chairman of the board during a transition period.

Merck, one of the world’s top vaccine makers, recently announced that it was scrapping its two COVID-19 vaccine candidates, but is continuing to develop a pair of potential treatments for the new coronavirus.

The Kenilworth, New Jersey, company lost $2.09 billion, or $0.83 per share. Adjusted income came to $3.4 billion, or $1.32 per share, well short of the $1.38 Wall Street was looking for, according to a survey by FactSet.

A year earlier, it posted net income of 2.36 billion, or $0.92 per share.

The maker of Januvia pills for Type 2 diabetes posted revenue of $12.51 billion, up 5% from a year earlier. That was also shy of the $12.67 billion projected by analysts.

By senior