Bristol-Myers beats sales, profit forecasts

Jan 24 (Reuters) - Bristol-Myers Squibb Co's quarterly sales and earnings beat Wall Street expectations, helped by cost cuts and growing sales of its treatments for cancer, blood clots and diabetes.

The company on Friday said it earned $726 million, or 44 cents per share, in the fourth quarter. That compared with $925 million, or 56 cents per share, in the year-earlier period, when Bristol-Myers took a big write-off for a failed hepatitis C drug.

Excluding special items, the drugmaker earned 51 cents per share, well above the average analyst estimate of 43 cents, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Global company revenue rose 6 percent to $4.44 billion, topping Wall Street expectations of $4.3 billion.