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Table of Contents

Pfizer Q4 FY2021 Earnings Report Preview: What to Look For

Key Takeaways

  • Analysts estimate adjusted EPS of $0.85 vs. $0.42 in Q4 FY 2020.
  • Pfizer's revenue is expected to grow at a robust pace, but slower than Q3 FY 2021.
  • The U.S. government has doubled its order for Pfizer's recently approved oral treatment for COVID-19.

Pfizer Inc. (PFE) has seen its earnings and revenue grow dramatically in recent quarters, driven largely by sales of its COVID-19 vaccine. The company reported $8.1 billion in profits attributable to Pfizer in the third quarter alone, its latest reporting period. While growth is expected to slow, demand for the vaccine is likely to remain strong. Several countries are administering a second booster shot against the disease, and other countries may follow.

Investors will be watching to see if Pfizer can maintain robust earnings and revenue growth when it reports earnings on Feb. 8, 2022 for Q4 FY 2021. Analysts expect both adjusted earnings per share (EPS) and revenue to rise at a rapid pace, albeit slower than in the previous quarter.

Pfizer, in collaboration with partner Germany-based BioNTech SE (BNTX), was the first company to receive emergency use authorization (EUA) from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its vaccine. The drug is marketed as Comirnaty. In August 2021, it also became the first company to gain full approval from the FDA for use of its vaccine in individuals 16 years of age or older. In yet another first, Pfizer's Paxlovid was the first oral antiviral treatment of COVID-19 to receive EUA, gaining the FDA's approval on Dec. 22, 2021. The prescription-only treatment is for adults and pediatric patients at least 12 years of age or weighing at least 88 pounds.

Shares of Pfizer have outperformed the broader market over the past year. The stock matched the market's performance through the first two months of the past year before it gradually began to outperform. The stock has been volatile but its performance gap significantly widened throughout the year. It has fallen from a recent peak reached in mid-December but it is still significantly beating the market. Pfizer's shares have provided a total return of 57.3% over the past year, well above the S&P 500's total return of 16.2%.

One Year Total Return for S&P 500 and Pfizer
Source: TradingView.

Pfizer Earnings History

Pfizer reported Q3 FY 2021 earnings results that surpassed analysts' expectations. Adjusted EPS rose 127.6% compared to the year-ago quarter as revenue expanded 135.9%. It was the fastest pace of growth for either metric in at least 14 quarters. Pfizer's rapid growth during the quarter was driven by sales of Comirnaty. The company raised its full-year FY 2021 adjusted EPS and revenue guidance.

In Q2 FY 2021, Pfizer's earnings and revenue beat consensus estimates. Adjusted EPS rose 73.4% year over year (YOY), marking the third straight quarter of growth after five consecutive quarters of declines. Revenue increased 92.4% compared to the year-ago quarter, rising for the third consecutive quarter after six straight quarters of declines. Growth was driven by sales of Comirnaty. Pfizer raised its full-year guidance.

Analysts expect another strong quarter of growth in both the top and bottom line in Q4 FY 2021, but slower than in the previous quarter. Adjusted EPS is expected to rise 103.8% compared to the year-ago quarter as revenue climbs 103.6%. It would be the fifth straight quarter of growth for either metric. For full-year FY 2021, analysts expect adjusted EPS to rise 88.5% as annual revenue expands 94.3%. It would be the fastest annual growth rates the company has posted in at least eight years.

Pfizer Key Stats
  Estimate for Q4 FY 2021 Q4 FY 2020 Q4 FY 2019
Adjusted Earnings Per Share ($) 0.85 0.42 0.36
Revenue ($B) 23.8 11.7 10.4

Source: Visible Alpha

Despite analyst expectations of a slowing of earnings and revenue growth, a number of factors are continuing to drive demand for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine as well as Pfizer's recently approved oral treatment. As mentioned above, some countries are administering second boosters. Pfizer also recently submitted a request for EUA of its vaccine for use in children 6 months through 4 years of age. An approval would give a further boost in demand for Pfizer's drug. At least a portion of the approximately 18 million U.S. children under 5 years of age would be likely to use the treatment. In early January, the U.S. government doubled its order for Pfizer's oral treatment amid a surge in cases of COVID-19. President Joe Biden said that even more may be needed.

Article Sources

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  1. Visible Alpha. "Financial Data." Accessed Feb. 4, 2022.

  2. The Wall Street Journal. "As Omicron Spreads, Some Nations Offer a Second Covid-19 Booster." Accessed Feb. 5, 2022.

  3. Pfizer Inc. "PFIZER QUARTERLY CORPORATE PERFORMANCE – FOURTH QUARTER 2021." Accessed Feb. 4, 2022.

  4. Food and Drug Administration. "FDA Takes Key Action in Fight Against COVID-19 By Issuing Emergency Use Authorization for First COVID-19 Vaccine." Accessed Feb. 5, 2022.

  5. Food and Drug Administration. "FDA Approves First COVID-19 Vaccine." Accessed Feb. 5, 2022.

  6. Food and Drug Administration. "Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: FDA Authorizes First Oral Antiviral for Treatment of COVID-19." Accessed Feb. 5, 2022.

  7. Pfizer Inc. "PFIZER REPORTS THIRD-QUARTER 2021 RESULTS," Page 1. Accessed Feb. 5, 2022.

  8. Pfizer Inc. "PFIZER REPORTS SECOND-QUARTER 2021 RESULTS," Page 1. Accessed Feb. 5, 2022.

  9. Food and Drug Administration. "Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: FDA Advisory Committee Meeting to Discuss Request for Authorization of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine for Children 6 Months Through 4 Years of Age." Accessed Feb. 5, 2022.

  10. The New York Times. "Biden Administration to Increase Supply of ‘Game Changer’ Pfizer Pill." Accessed Feb. 5, 2022.

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