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Cardinal Health profit beats market estimates as margins improve

(Reuters) - Cardinal Health Inc reported an adjusted quarterly profit that beat market estimates due to margin expansion in its wholesale drug and medical supply businesses.

The Dublin, Ohio-based company forecast earnings, excluding one-time items, of $3.45 to $3.60 per share for the full fiscal year. Analysts were expecting earnings of $3.55 per share.

The company posted a net loss of $586 million, or $1.72 per share, for the fourth quarter ended June 30 compared with a profit of $236 million, or 68 cents per share, a year earlier.

The loss was due to a non-cash charge of $829 million related to a goodwill impairment in the company's nuclear pharmacy services division.

Earnings from continuing operations, excluding one-time items, rose to 79 cents per share from 73 cents per share a year earlier. Analysts on average were expecting earnings of 77 cents per share, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Revenue fell 5 percent to $25.4 billion. Analysts on average were expecting $24.56 billion.

(Reporting by Shailesh Kuber; Editing by Ted Kerr)

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