J&J, Novartis second quarter sales rise

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Johnson & Johnson reported a 13% rise in sales overall to $15.1 billion from $13.4 billion.
Major growth came from J&J's consumer business, where sales rose 49% to $3.6 billion due to the acquisition of Pfizer's consumer products business late last year.
J&J's pharmaceuticals unit posted a sales increase of 5.8% to $6.1 billion for the second quarter. Sales of J&J's antipsychotic medicines, including its top medicine Risperdal, rose 10% to $1.14 billion. Blockbuster migraine drug Topamax sold $578 million in the second quarter, up 17% from a year ago.
Novartis' sales, excluding the company's baby-food business, rose 10% to $9.4 billion from $8.5.
Novartis said it plans to use proceeds from the sale to fund targeted acquisitions and repurchase up to around $4 billion of Novartis shares by February 2008, as part of an ongoing buyback program. 
Despite second quarter sales growth, Novartis has lowered its sales outlook for the second half due to earlier than expected generic competition for hypertension drug Lotrel, the suspension of bowel drug Zelnorm in the US, and generic competition for antifungal Lamisil. 
Meanwhile, Pfizer is scheduled to release its second quarter results during a call with analysts on Wednesday.
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