Healthcare Business


Jon C. Ogg

Today’s version of the BioHealth Business Daily is rather different as we have a big disappointment from one of the top biotech operations in the world.  BioHealth stocks moving on news and after news are Antigenics Inc. (NASDAQ: AGEN), Array BioPharma, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARRY), Genzyme Corporation (NASDAQ: GENZ), Gilead Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ: GILD), Human Genome Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ: HGSI), NPS Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: NPSP), QLT Inc. (NASDAQ: QLTI), Raptor Pharmaceuticals Corp. (NASDAQ: RPTP), and StemCells, Inc. (NASDAQ: STEM).  The news and impact today is enough to denote the Biotech HOLDRs (NYSE: BBH), iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology (NASDAQ: IBB) ETF, and the PowerShares Dynamic Biotech & Genome (NYSE: PBE).

We have tried to smooth out the non-news movers today to mainly focus on those moving on their own news rather than on news of peers.

Antigenics Inc. (NASDAQ: AGEN) is up today on an article out yesterday from Cleveland Live, although it was out yesterday morning so there could be additional chats out there.  Still, for a down-sector tape this one is solid with gains so far of 3.4% at $1.21 on over 3 million shares.  The 52-week range is $0.51 to $3.34 and the average volume is 1.2 million shares.

Array BioPharma, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARRY) is holding up very well after yesterday’s huge drug partnership gains. After a 33% gain yesterday, the stock is down “only” 4% at $3.86 on 1.8 million shares.

Genzyme Corporation (NASDAQ: GENZ) is up after earnings with $0.37 EPS on a 6% drop in revenues to $1.07 billion versus estimates of $0.33 EPS and $1.14 billion in revenues.  Perhaps more importantly, Genzyme sees a $175 million consent decree disgorgement for its Allston plant woes.  That sounds bad, but some have felt that the Allston plant fines, woes, and remedies might cost much more than that.  Shares are up 1.75% at $54.53 on about 5.3 million shares.

Gilead Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ: GILD) is down sharply after its earnings were $0.99 EPS vs. $0.96 estimates and revenue rose 36% to $2.09 billion, but it lowered its 2010 sales outlook partly due to healthcare reform.  This has put a tilt on the whole sector today and probably kept a lid on some stocks which might have otherwise risen as this is the #2 biotech by market cap in America.  Shares are down a sharp 9.75% at $40.66 on over 57 million shares.  Gilead hit a new 52-week today now that its 52-week range is $39.90 to $50.00.

Human Genome Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ: HGSI) is again probably feeling lucky.  Yesterday’s near-$2 drop could have been far worse after its Benlysta secondary endpoint was not met.  Today, shares are trading down only 0.4% at $29.48 and the $29.28 low today is handily above the low yesterday of $27.72.

NPS Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: NPSP) is down marginally after it closed that securities offering $53.3 million, which does include the over-allotment options being exercised.  Shares are trading down 1.4% at $6.39 on 650,000 shares.

QLT Inc. (NASDAQ: QLTI) is up again for a day-two run after yesterday’s news that all three of the patients enrolled in a Phase 1 study experienced clinically relevant improvements in one or more visual function parameters in inherited progressive retinal degenerative disease.  This actually hit a new 52-week high today.  Shares are trading up 4.7% at $6.45 on over 225,000 shares.  Average volume is only 155,000 shares and the new 52-week range is $1.93 to $6.48.

Raptor Pharmaceuticals Corp. (NASDAQ: RPTP) is one which you might think is never talked about, but this stock was started in new analyst coverage with a ‘Buy’ rating at Ladenberg Thalmann.  Even after the gains, the market cap is a mere $37 million. This one is seeking cures and treatments for various brain disorders and neurodegenerative diseases, genetic disorders, and cancer with its own proprietary use of receptor-associated proteins and mesoderm development proteins.  Shares are up 17.7% at $1.66 on about 900,000 shares. This barely trades 50,000 on an average day and the 52-week trading range is $0.07 to $4.90.

StemCells, Inc. (NASDAQ: STEM) sounded like big news, although the stock reaction is not indicating that it is.  The company announced this morning that it plans to advance to a second clinical trial in Batten Disease with an increased emphasis on the measurement of clinical benefit rather than just a safety profile.  Shares are up almost 1% at $1.18 on 1.4 million shares.  The average volume is only 1.3 million shares and the 52-week range is $1.02 to $1.94.

Biotech HOLDRs (NYSE: BBH) appears to have tested its 200-day moving averages after Gilead reported, and Gilead makes up almost 28% of this ETF.  The Biotech HOLDRs is trading down 4.15% at $98.45.  The iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology (NASDAQ: IBB) ETF is down 2% at $90.35 on over 1.5 million shares, about 250% of normal volume.

PowerShares Dynamic Biotech & Genome (NYSE: PBE) is down today, but it continues to challenge the brain at a time when so many components in its holdings are not at highs. This hit a 52-week of $20.06 early this morning, but shares are now trading down about 1% at $19.83 on only about 26,000 shares.  This one keeps mysteriously hitting 52-week highs.

You can join our free daily email distribution list to hear more about dividend trends, analyst upgrades and downgrades, top day trader and active trader alerts, news on Buffett and other investment gurus, IPOs, secondary offerings, private equity, and more.