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Swiss pharma Novartis posts 6 percent profit drop

GENEVA (AP) -- Swiss pharmaceutical giant Novartis AG has posted a 6 percent drop in net profit in the third quarter, citing negative currency trends and other factors.

The Basel, Switzerland-based company reported a net profit of $2.26 billion in the July-September quarter, down from last year's equivalent of $2.42 billion, which was downwardly adjusted to conform to new reporting requirements.

In its earnings statement Tuesday, Novartis said a weakened yen and emerging market currencies, along with expiring patents and royalty payments, affected its financial performance, but that third-quarter net sales rose 4 percent to $14.3 billion, up from in the comparable period of 2012.

Chief Executive Joseph Jimenez says in a statement the company had "strong sales performance in the third quarter, with all divisions contributing to growth."