Boston Scientific posts net loss on charges, slow sales

Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:05am EDT

(Reuters) - Boston Scientific Corp (BSX.N) reported a quarterly net loss due to charges and weaker sales on Thursday, but results were better than expected excluding items.

The medical device maker also said it expects to post a profit of 6 cents to 9 cents per share for the fourth quarter, or 15 cents to 18 cents per share, excluding items, on sales of $1.740 billion to $1.815 billion.

In the third quarter, it recorded a net loss of $725 million, or 52 cents per share, compared with a net profit $142 million, or 9 cents per share, in the year-ago period.

Excluding items, the profit was 16 cents per share. On that basis, the average Wall Street estimate was for a profit of 11 cents.

Per-share figures were based on fewer outstanding shares as the company repurchased about 46 million shares under a 2011 repurchase authorization.

Quarterly sales were $1.735 billion, down from $1.874 billion a year ago.

Sales of interventional cardiology products, such as heart stents, fell 20 percent in the quarter, while sales of cardiac rhythm management products, such as pacemakers and implantable defibrillators, fell 8 percent. Those are the company's two largest businesses, making up more than half of total sales.

Sales in its smaller units, including endoscopy and urology, rose at single-digit percentage rates.

(Reporting by Debra Sherman; Editing by Maureen Bavdek and Jeffrey Benkoe)

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