Abbott Labs 1Q15 Earnings Call Notes

Euro affects top line but not bottom line

“As we discussed last quarter, while the weaker euro impacts our top line, movements in the euro have a minimal impact on our bottom line due to our euro denominated cost base. Therefore the further weakening of the Euro that we saw in the first quarter of the year does not impact our 2015 EPS forecast.”

You can try to have an M&A plan, but the market will dictate what’s available

“So I think the deal market or the M&A market out there – I would love to say we all go out there with a plan, we have the following priorities, we have the following targets et cetera. Those plans are always dead on arrival, the market tells you either who is willing to talk to you, who is willing to engage, what valuations maybe, what the circumstances in any given geography or industry maybe, those things always tend to determine the timing of opportunity and I think what we have been good at is being ready even opportunity aligns, and when peoples’ willingness to engage aligns and so forth.

And I can’t always predict the timing of that. But I can tell you if you are not ready when the things line up then you are not able to take advantage of it. So, we are obviously I think always tracking, always studying, and we have always got an idea of what our priorities would be. The market will tell us what order we get to address and to some degree, but you are right.”

We’re less vulnerable to moves in the Euro

“in terms of the currency piece I think all of us were caught off guard somewhat by the magnitude of the currency shift in the fourth quarter of last year, although maybe we shouldn’t have been, but we were. And in our case as I pointed out in the past we’re less vulnerable to the Euro, very much less vulnerable to the Euro then a lot of companies might be just because the mix of our business and where we produce and offset the exchange”

This tax code is a disadvantage to US companies. It puts a for sale sign on our companies

“This tax code disadvantage U.S. companies and put the sale sign on them for European and other companies to buy us and arbitrage tax rates and I strenuously object to the philosophy of the U.S. government on that line because I think in no way enhances job global creation or business creation or economic recovery in the United States when you advantage everybody else to buy our companies.”

It’s not hard to find good assets, it’s hard to put a deal together

“it’s not hard to find really good assets. That part is easy and it’s not hard to find assets with good management, good fit, good products, good geographic location…hard part is getting beyond the recognition of it and getting to something where either somebody is interested in a transaction or it’s the value that doesn’t make [indiscernible] and that’s sometimes a challenge.”