Drugmaker Valeant tops 1Q profit forecasts, chops debt again

FILE - This May 27, 2013, file photo, shows the head office and logo of Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. in Laval, Quebec, Canada. Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. reports earnings, Tuesday, May 9, 2017. (Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press via AP, File)

LAVAL, Quebec — Shares of Valeant Pharmaceuticals surged after the Canadian drugmaker topped Wall Street's first-quarter expectations and said it chopped its debt by another $1.3 billion, giving it more financial flexibility.

The drugmaker also said Tuesday that it booked a one-time, $908 million income tax benefit from an internal restructuring in the quarter.

Valeant's debt levels had swelled in recent years as it grew through a string of acquisitions. But the Laval, Quebec, company said it has reduced its total debt by $3.6 billion since the end of last year's first quarter, and it has lowered the cash requirements on its principal debt payments by more than $6 billion through 2020.

Overall, the company earned $628 million in the first quarter after reporting a loss in the same period a year earlier. Earnings, adjusted for non-recurring costs, totaled $2.80 per share.

Analysts expected, on average, earnings of 96 cents per share, according to Zacks Investment Research.

The drugmaker posted revenue of $2.11 billion in the period, which missed the average Street forecast of $2.16 billion.

Shares of Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. jumped nearly 13 percent, or $1.25, to $10.96 in pre-market trading after results were released.

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Elements of this story were generated by Automated Insights (http://automatedinsights.com/ap) using data from Zacks Investment Research. Access a Zacks stock report on VRX at https://www.zacks.com/ap/VRX

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Keywords: Valeant Pharmaceuticals, Earnings Report

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