The multiyear run in major biotech stocks has not let up in 2015. Most of the large and mid-cap stocks in the industry are higher, but the smaller and lesser known names have also tracked them higher. In fact, several biotechs are up 200% or more so far in 2015.
24/7 Wall St. ran a screen for the top five biotech stocks of 2015. On average, the gain is above 200%. For a company to be included, it had to have a market cap of at least $50 million — and a preference was given to companies with even larger market caps than that. As you may have imagined, some of these biotech names may be relatively or completely unknown to many investors.
The top five biotech performers in a FINVIZ screen are CorMedix Inc. (NASDAQ: CRMD), Cellular Biomedicine Group Inc. (NASDAQ: CBMG), Recro Pharma Inc. (NASDAQ: REPH), Esperion Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ: ESPR) and Anthera Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: ANTH). For reference, the iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF (NASDAQ: IBB) was up almost 21% year-to-date, as of Friday’s close.
Whether these gains suggest further upside is up to readers to decide. We have included a basic driving force behind the gain on each and the performance against recent trading, as well as added color if applicable.
CorMedix (Gain of 305%)
CorMedix has risen 305% in the year to date and now has a market cap of $187 million. The largest upswing for CorMedix was seen in early March, partially attributable to the company’s announcement of multiple strategic business updates, namely the retention of investment bank Evercore as a financial advisor. Otherwise, the company has steadily grown for the first quarter of 2015, with a slight jump in mid-February.
Shares of CorMedix recently traded at $7.75, in a 52-week trading range of $1.05 to $9.48. The stock has a consensus analyst price target of $2.50.
Cellular Biomedicine (Gain of 247%)
Cellular Biomedicine is up 247% so far in 2015, and its market cap is $491 million. The biotechnical and medical technology investment bank, LifeTech Capital, initiated coverage of Cellular Biomedicine Group with a Strong Speculative Buy rating and a price target of $23.75, in early February. This call was quickly realized when shares eclipsed this level within only a week. However, a big driving force for this company is its cancer treatments and innovative use of stem cells.
Shares of Cellular Biomedicine were at $44.88. The stock has a consensus price target of $32.50 and a 52-week trading range of $4.51 to $49.00.