6 Companies That Destroyed Shareholders Last Week

Across the board, markets are continuing to push their all-time highs, even in the usual August doldrums. While investors are largely content with the market performance at the moment, there are still a few companies that have lagged. Looking even further ahead, the Federal Reserve has its meeting in September, with a rate hike is presumably on the table, and this has the potential to destroy more positions.

24/7 Wall Street has picked out a few companies posting some of the largest losses for the week. Companies hitting lows and creating huge shareholder hits when the market is hitting all-time highs are not exactly winning the hearts and minds of the investing community.

We have included a note on why each stock has lagged, as well as a recent trading history, consensus analyst price target and a 52-week trading range.

Auris Medical

After Auris Medical Holding A.G. (NASDAQ: EARS) reported its second-quarter financial results late Wednesday, the stock took a dive. The company posted a net loss of $8.7 million, or $0.26 per share.

At the same time, Auris provided a business update on its acute inner ear tinnitus trial that was not up to par. The company said that it was disappointed in the top-line results from its TACTT2 trial with Keyzilen, and that it will meet with regulatory agencies with further analysis in the fourth quarter.

Over the past week, Auris shares dropped by roughly 50%. The stock closed trading at $2.12 on Friday, with a consensus price target of $8.25 and a 52-week range of $1.95 to $7.96.

Hain Celestial

Early Tuesday, Hain Celestial Group Inc. (NASDAQ: HAIN) shares were in free fall after the company announced that it will delay the release of its fiscal fourth-quarter financial results. The company said that this delay was in relation to its accounting. However, there was additional fallout as multiple securities litigation firms are now investigating the company due to this delay.

At the same time, Hain did away with its fiscal full year guidance. So investors must be asking themselves if this is just a one-quarter problem, or how far this issue will span.

During the fourth quarter, Hain identified concessions that were granted to certain distributors in the United States. The company currently is evaluating whether the revenue associated with those concessions was accounted for in the correct period, and it also currently is evaluating its internal control over financial reporting.

The Audit Committee of the company’s board of directors is conducting an independent review and has retained independent counsel to assist in that review. Hain will be unable to release its results until this review is completed.

Over the past week, the stock dropped by 30%. Shares were trading at $38.90 on Friday’s close, with a consensus price target of $45.56 and a 52-week range of $33.12 to $62.55.

Portola Pharmaceuticals

Portola Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: PTLA) announced that it has received a Complete Response Letter (CRL) from the FDA in regards to its Biologics License Application for AndexXa (andexanet alfa).

Currently, AndexXa is an FDA-designated Breakthrough Therapy that is in development for patients treated with a direct (apixaban, rivaroxaban or edoxaban) or indirect (enoxaparin) Factor Xa inhibitor when reversal of anticoagulation is needed due to life-threatening or uncontrolled bleeding. Currently there is no FDA-approved antidote for this.

For those that don’t know, a CRL is a communication from the FDA that informs companies that an application cannot be approved in its present form. Sometimes this can be a death sentence for a drug.

Over the past week, the stock dropped by 27%. Shares were trading at $19.59 on Friday’s close, with a consensus price target of $36.00 and a 52-week trading range of $18.20 to $57.96.

Cerulean Pharma

The top-line results from Cerulean Pharma Inc.’s (NASDAQ: CERU) mid-stage clinical trial of its lead candidate, CRLX101, in combination with Avastin (bevacizumab) in the treatment of patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma, demonstrated no statistically significant difference in median progression-free survival and objective response rate for the CRLX101. Christopher D. T. Guiffre, president and CEO of Cerulean, further commented:

We are disappointed with this outcome and will undertake a thorough analysis of the data to understand why CRLX101 plus Avastin underperformed compared to the results we saw in an earlier investigator-sponsored trial.

Cerulean’s shares dropped by 61% last week and ended Friday at $1.15, with a consensus price target of $8.71 and a 52-week range of $0.95 to $5.20.

Juniper Pharmaceuticals

After the markets closed on Wednesday, Juniper Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: JNP) announced that it did not achieve its primary and secondary endpoints in a mid-stage trial. The company’s Phase 2b clinical trial is evaluating its 10% lidocaine bioadhesive vaginal gel, COL-1077, for the reduction of pain intensity in women undergoing an endometrial biopsy with tenaculum placement. Based on the results of the trial, the company decided to discontinue its development of COL-1077.

Over the past week, Juniper shares retreated 13%. They were last seen at $6.02. The consensus price target is $12.73, and the 52-week range is $4.30 to $15.44.

Aurinia Pharmaceuticals

Shares of Aurinia Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: AUPH) took a dive on Monday, with those shares practically getting cut in half. This was the result of the completion of its mid-stage trial wherein the company actually met its primary endpoint and the trial was considered a success.

However there were 13 deaths in the study, out of 265 patients, as well as a higher overall rate of serious adverse events in both voclosporin groups. Investors latched on to this tidbit of data and dumped the stock, but this is not the end of the story. Aurinia has since made a small recovery as it seems that Monday’s drop may have been overstated, especially on positive results.

The stock was only down 44% on the week. It was last trading at $2.15 on Friday. The consensus price target is $7.80, and the 52-week trading range is $1.42 to $4.49.