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NPS Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NPSP - Analyst Report) reported fourth quarter 2012 net loss per share of 14 cents, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 9 cents and the year-ago loss of 10 cents. The wider loss was primarily attributable to higher expenses.

Fourth quarter 2012 revenues climbed 3.5% to $27.2 million. Revenues constitute of royalties as well as milestones and license fees. Revenues were below the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $29 million.

In the fourth quarter of 2012 research and development expenses were $24 million, up 11.1%. The increase was attributable to higher personnel-related expenses incurred during the final quarter of 2012. In 2012 general and administrative expenses were $11.2 million, up 55.5%.

Full year 2012 net loss per share was 22 cents compared with 45 cents of loss per share in 2011. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2012 hinted at a net loss of 16 cents per share. Revenues in 2012 increased 28.5% year over year to $130.6 million. Revenues for 2012 missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $134 million.

We note that the company received encouraging news during the final quarter of 2012 when the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Gattex® (teduglutide). The drug was cleared for the treatment of adults with short bowel syndrome (SBS), who are dependent on a parenteral support.

NPS Pharma is also developing Natpara (rhPTH[1-84]) for the treatment of adult hypoparathyroidism and expects to submit its Biologic License Application (BLA) to the FDA in the second half of 2013.

2013 Guidance

Total operating expenses, including share-based compensation are expected in the range $135 million to $145 million in 2013.

NPS carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Currently, companies like Lannett Company, Inc. (LCI - Snapshot Report), SIGA Technologies, Inc. and United Therapeutics Corporation (UTHR - Analyst Report) look more attractive with a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

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