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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
June 10, 2014
12:13 EDTIDIX, ACHN, ABBV, MRK, GILDAchillion surges after FDA lifts hold, buyout speculation continues
Shares of hepatitis C treatment maker Achillion (ACHN) are rising dramatically for a second day after Merck (MRK) yesterday announced that it would acquire another company in the space. Meanwhile, Achillion announced today that it had received favorable news from the FDA about resuming certain clinical trials and added that it had begun a Phase I trial of one of its hepatitis C, or HCV, treatments, ACH-3422. WHAT'S NEW: Achillion is rallying for a second straight day after Merck announced that it had acquired Idenix (IDIX). Like Achillion, Idenix is a smaller company that has developed HCV treatments and, also like Idenix, one of Achillion's HCV treatments is a nucleotide. Achillion earlier today announced that the FDA had removed its clinical hold on sovaprevir. As a result of the FDA's decision, Achillion will be able to conduct clinical trials of the drug, the company stated. The FDA placed a hold on the drug last year after a number of patients developed elevated liver enzymes while taking it. Also today, Achillion announced that it had begun dosing patients with ACH-3422 in a Phase I clinical trial. ANALYST REACTION: In a note to investors earlier today Edward Tenthoff, an analyst at research firm PiperJaffray, wrote that today's news positions Achillion as a takeover target. Additionally, the company could develop a nucleotide HCV treatment that is competitive with Gilead's successful Sovaldi, Tenthoff wrote. However, Tenthoff believes that potential buyers of Achillion may wait for more data on its products to be unveiled later this year before looking to bid. The analyst kept a Neutral rating on the stock. WHAT'S NOTABLE: Gilead and AbbVie (ABBV), whose stocks fell yesterday after Merck announced its acquisition, were defended today by RBC Capital and BMO Capital, respectively. RBC Capital expects sales of Gilead's Sovaldi to come in well above consensus estimates for 2015, potentially enabling the company's EPS to reach $8-$10. The market expects the sales of all HCV treatments to drop significantly in 2016, but the firm does not agree with this outlook and kept an Outperform rating on Gilead. Meanwhile, BMO Capital defended AbbVie. BMO still believes that the size and durability of the HCV market and AbbVie's franchise are underappreciated. The firm sees Merck as a significant competitor in HCV, but added that the potential of the assets it acquired from Idenix is "uncertain and somewhat risky." BMO kept an Outperform rating on AbbVie and continued to identify it as a top pick. PRICE ACTION: In early afternoon trading, Achillion surged 54% to $6.54. The stock had advanced more than 47% yesterday. Also near noon, Gilead rose 0.7% to $79.54, while Abbvie fell 0.9% to $53.38.
News For ACHN;GILD;ABBV;IDIX;MRK From The Last 14 Days
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April 20, 2015
07:20 EDTABBV, GILD, MRKAmerican Association for Cancer Research to hold annual meeting
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07:18 EDTABBVAmerican Academy of Neurology to hold annual meeting
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April 19, 2015
19:35 EDTMRKMerck to swiftly repay $5B loan, explore acquisitions by late 2017, Reuters says
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15:21 EDTMRKMerck announces new data from Keytruda study
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14:59 EDTMRKMerck's Keytruda 'superior' to ipilimumab for PFS in patients with melanoma
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14:47 EDTMRKMerck submits supplemental biologics license for Keytruda in lung cancer
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14:31 EDTMRKMerck reports 28% Keytruda response rate in 25 pleural mesothelioma patients
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April 17, 2015
16:50 EDTABBVAbbVie extends exchange offer to acquire Pharmacyclics
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April 15, 2015
19:08 EDTABBVEnanta confirms AbbVie hepatitis C treatment granted priority review in Japan
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19:03 EDTABBVAbbVie's chronic hepatitis C treatment granted priority review in Japan
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16:01 EDTGILDOptions Update; April 15, 2015
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures down 49c to 21.90. Option volume leaders: AAPL NFLX C PBR KMI RIG MCP TWTR GILD BAC according to Track Data.
08:33 EDTMRKFDA panel results positive for Merck, says SunTrust
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April 14, 2015
13:32 EDTMRKMerck, NewLink Genetics confirm initiation of Phase 3 trial of Ebola vaccine
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April 13, 2015
16:01 EDTGILDOptions Update; April 13, 2015
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14:07 EDTABBVEarnings Watch: Johnson & Johnson shares down slightly since last earnings
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10:00 EDTABBVOn The Fly: Analyst Upgrade Summary
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09:34 EDTGILDActive equity options trading on open
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08:58 EDTMRKMerck may have positive read through from briefing docs, says SunTrust
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08:34 EDTABBVAbbVie upgraded on Imbruvica outlook at BMO Capital
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07:02 EDTABBVAbbVie upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at BMO Capital
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