Healthcare Business

Major Biotechs Get Mixed Message on Short Interest

Chris Lange

The short interest data are out for the most recent settlement date, March 13. Generally speaking, companies within the biotech industry are considered a riskier group of stocks, with big potential upside and big potential downside.

As we have said before, FDA rulings can make or break the biotech stocks, and short sellers and mega-bulls often go to war against each other in these companies. After all, if a single failed clinical trial can mean disaster for a stock, then some short sellers can argue for a stock implosion down the road.

24/7 Wall St. has reviewed the top biotech companies, without focusing on speculative companies. The March 13 short interest data has been compared with the previous report, and short interest moves in these selected biotech stocks were mixed.

Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc.’s (NASDAQ: ALXN) short interest increased to 4.76 million shares from the previous 4.54 million. Shares were trading at $85.93, in a 52-week range of $72.67 to $141.86.

Amgen Inc. (NASDAQ: AMGN) saw its short interest decrease to 8.69 million shares from the previous level of 8.98 million. Shares were last seen trading at $202.34, in a 52-week range of $166.30 to $244.99.

Short interest in Biogen Inc. (NASDAQ: BIIB) rose to 3.56 million shares from the previous 3.14 million. The stock recently traded at $276.19, within a 52-week range of $215.78 to $374.99.

Gilead Sciences Inc. (NASDAQ: GILD) saw its short interest rise to 26.58 million shares from 23.76 million in the previous period. Shares were trading at $73.96, in a 52-week range of $60.89 to $85.97.

The number of MannKind Corp. (NASDAQ: MNKD) shares short decreased to 42.72 million. The previous reading was 46.18 million. The stock traded at $1.07 a share, in a 52-week range of $0.80 to $2.01.