Teva Pharmaceutical Industries has cut its sales and earnings forecasts for 2012 due in part to pricing problems and currency effects in Europe.

The Israel-based major now expects earnings in the range of $5.30-$5.40 per share, down from previous guidance of $5.48-$5.68. Turnover is likely to reach $20-$21 billion, down from a previous forecast of $22 billion.

Teva's revenues should be made up of $10.5 billion in sales from the USA, $5.8 billion in Europe and $4.2 billion for the rest of the world. Sales of generics are forecast to hit $10.7 billion, while in terms of branded drugs, the multiple sclerosis drug Copaxone (glatiramer acetate) should bring in $3.8 billion; Azilect (rasagiline) for Parkinson’s disease could reach $580 million.

New chief executive Jeremy Levin (pictured), who has just taken over from Shlomo Yanai, said on a conference call that the firm's performance in Europe has been impacted by more than $1 billion. This is due to negative currency effects of $600 million, "and the ongoing macroeconomic conditions and healthcare reforms in key European markets will have an estimated impact of $400 million."

Dr Levin also spoke about the importance of improving market share in the US generics sector and hinted at possible divestitures, saying that "if there are businesses that don't fit, we will look to divest them". Teva has also initiated a cost-cutting and efficiency programme across all its operations.