Salix Pharmaceuticals shares were trading 6 percent lower Friday afternoon after the Raleigh drug company posted second-quarters results that failed to measure up to Wall Street's expectations.
Some analysts, however, continued to be bullish on the company's prospects.
Sterne Agee analyst Shibani Halhotra lowered her near-term earnings-per-share projections but continued to rate the stock a "buy."
"We are buyers as we view Salix as one of the best organic growth stories in the sector," she wrote.
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She noted that demand for Salix's key products remains strong but "inventory swings" impacted the second-quarter results, which were released Thursday after the markets closed.
Salix's revenue rose 62 percent in the quarter and non-GAAP net income more than doubled, but analysts had loftier expectations. The year-earlier results didn't include sales of drugs that Salix acquired earlier this year with its $2.6 billion purchase of specialty drug company Santarus.
Analyst Tim Lugo of William Blair & Co. also maintained his "outperform" rating on the stock.
"Wholesale levels cause confusion for second straight quarter despite robust Xifaxan prescription growth," Lugo wrote. Xifaxan is Salix's best-selling drug.
Salix expects its merger with Cosmo Pharmaceuticals, a subsidiary of an Italian drug company, to close in November. That deal is expected to significantly lower Salix's tax rate; the combined company's headquarters will be in Raleigh.