ZURICH, July 17 (Reuters) - Swiss drugmaker Novartis posted a 2 percent rise in quarterly sales on Thursday and confirmed its full-year guidance, expecting revenue from new products to offset generic competition to its blood pressure pill Diovan.
Net sales in the second quarter came in at to $14.64 billion, falling slightly short of the average forecast for $14.72 billion in a Reuters poll. Core earnings per share increased 4 percent to $1.34, in line with expectations.
The Basel-based firm confirmed its guidance for sales to grow in the low-to-mid single digits this year in constant currencies, while core operating income is expected to grow ahead of sales. (Reporting by Caroline Copley)