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June 10, 2014
12:22 EDTIDIX, SGMS, AGN, FRAN, MRK, ACHN, IGT, RSH, VRXOn The Fly: Midday Wrap
Stocks on Wall Street were lower at midday, threatening to break their recent winning streak. The market has steadily moved higher over the past week and has seen the Dow and S&P move to all-time highs, albeit on very light volume. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., wholesale inventories rose 1.1% in April, with sales up 1.3%, which were both better than forecast. The JOLTS report showed job openings climbed 289K to 4.46M in April. In China, official data showed an index of consumer prices rose 2.5% year-on-year in May, while China's producer price index contracted 1.4% during the month. COMPANY NEWS: Allergan (AGN) once again rejected the takeover proposal being made by Valeant (VRX) in partnership with hedge fund Pershing Square, saying that their upwardly revised bid still "substantially undervalues the company, creates significant risks and uncertainties for the stockholders of Allergan, and is not in the best interests of the company and its stockholders." Allergan said in a letter to Valeant that it publicly disclosed that the Allergan board has "serious concerns" about the large stock component of the proposal and that the latest Valeant proposal does not warrant discussions between the companies. Following the latest twist in this ongoing story, shares of Allergan were fractionally lower, while Valeant was down a bit over 1%. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Achillion (ACHN), which rose another 54% near noon after having gained 47% yesterday. This morning JMP Securities upgraded Achillion following Merck's (MRK) acquisition of Idenix (IDIX) yesterday, while Piper Jaffray became the latest Street research firm to say it believes Achillion is positioned as an acquisition target. Also, Achillion announced that the FDA has removed the clinical hold on sovaprevir, an NS3/4A protease inhibitor, to permit the conduct of trials in patients with HCV. Also higher for a second straight session was Scientific Games (SGMS), which rose nearly 13% after the company announced the appointment of a new President and CEO. The company's shares had risen yesterday after Reuters said another company in the same space, International Game Technology (IGT), was exploring a sale and has attracted interest from rival gaming companies and private equity firms. Among the noteworthy losers was apparel, jewelry, and accessories retailer Francesca’s (FRAN), which sunk more than 13% after the company's first quarter quarter results fell short of analysts' consensus estimates and it cut its fiscal 2014 outlook. Also lower following its own earnings report was RadioShack (RSH), which declined over 9% after reporting a Q1 loss that exceeded analyst's expectations and warning that it may need to borrow additional funds or raise capital if the current trend in its operating results continues or further declines. INDEXES: Near midday, the Dow was down 14.18, or 0.08%, to 16,928.92, the Nasdaq was down 6.62, or 0.15%, to 4,329.62, and the S&P 500 was down 3.39, or 0.17%, to 1,947.88.
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September 28, 2015
08:02 EDTMRKSyndax and Merck announce patients dosed in trial of Entinostat and Keytruda
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07:52 EDTAGN, MRKIIR Holdings to hold a conference
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07:50 EDTSGMSUBS and Deutsche Bank to co-host a forum
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07:46 EDTVRXUBS to hold a field trip
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07:31 EDTMRKMerck says Japan's PMDA approves Marizev DPP-4 inhibitor for Type 2 diabetes
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07:04 EDTSGMSScientific Games announces Cirque du Soleil partnersihp at Global Gaming Expo
Scientific Games announced a new partnership with Cirque du Soleil at the Global Gaming Expo in booth #1126, September 29 to October 1, with the first featured production: KOOZA. The experience is an eye-catching, bonus-rich slot game that combines Scientific Games' Pro Wave 360O slot configuration with the acrobatic adrenaline rush of KOOZA.
September 27, 2015
16:47 EDTMRKMerck reports Phase 1b data on Keytruda for two gastrointestinal cancers
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14:58 EDTMRKMerck announces Phase 1b data on Keytruda for nasopharyngeal cancer
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September 25, 2015
15:31 EDTMRKMerck volatility elevated as shares trend lower
Merck October weekly call option implied volatility is at 39, October is at 34, November is a 29; compared to its 52-week range of 15 to 34, suggesting large price movement after presidential candidate Hilary Clinton announced plans early this week to cap prescription drug prices.
12:38 EDTVRXOptions with increasing implied volatility
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08:15 EDTMRKMerck narrow Keytruda label may not matter as much as thought, says Bernstein
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08:00 EDTAGNAllergan launches generic version of INVEGA
Allergan announced that it has launched a generic version of Janssen's INVEGA in the U.S. Allergan is the first company to receive FDA approval for and launch a generic version of INVEGA, demonstrating the deep expertise of the Company's global generics R&D, regulatory and supply chain teams.
05:11 EDTVRXStocks with implied volatility movement; VRX CAT
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September 24, 2015
17:04 EDTMRKMerck, Pfizer to collaborate with Agilent's Dako on Avelumab diagnostic
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17:02 EDTSGMSScientific Games wins Ohio Lottery instant game contract
Scientific Games has signed a new two-year contract with four two-year extension options to provide instant games and related services to the Ohio Lottery. Ohioans purchased a record $1.5B in instant games in fiscal year 2015, an 8.8% increase over the prior year.
16:03 EDTMRKNewLink Genetics awarded $8.1M from DTRA to advance Ebola vaccine
NewLink Genetics (NLNK) announced that the Defense Threat Reduction Agency of the Department of Defense has awarded a subsidiary of NewLink Genetics an $8.1M base contract with future options totaling $5.2M to support various development activities of the investigational rVSV-ZEBOV Ebola) vaccine candidate. NewLink has exclusively licensed research, development and manufacturing of the rVSV-ZEBOV vaccine to Merck (MRK). In late 2014, Merck, known as MSD outside the United States and Canada, licensed the vaccine from NewLink Genetics to apply Merck's vaccine expertise to help accelerate the development of this vaccine candidate. Clinical studies of the rVSV-ZEBOV are ongoing.
14:17 EDTAGNAppeals court affirms Shire Vyvanse patents valid until 2023
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11:08 EDTVRXOptions with increasing implied volatility
Options with increasing implied volatility: PTCT CZR KITE HZNP NAV CREE VRX PNK
September 23, 2015
09:05 EDTAGNAmgen and Allergan's lung cancer biosimilar candidate meets Phase 3 endpoints
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08:50 EDTMRKProvectus initiates Phase 1b/2 trial of PV-10 combo with Pembrolizumab
Provectus Biopharmaceuticals (PVCT) announced it has completed development of the protocol for Phase1b/2 testing of its investigational cancer drug PV-10 in combination with pembrolizumab in patients with Stage IV melanoma. Pembrolizumab, also known as Keytruda, a product of Merck (MRK), is an immune checkpoint inhibitor approved for treatment of patients with advanced or unresectable melanoma. PV-10 is Provectus's novel investigational drug for cancer that is injected into solid tumors. It is currently undergoing Phase 3 clinical testing in patients with Stage III melanoma. Clinical testing under the new Phase 1b/2 protocol is expected to commence before the end of the year. The FDA granted accelerated approval to pembrolizumab in September 2014, making it the first FDA-approved anti-PD-1 immune checkpoint inhibitor. Because pembrolizumab is already FDA-approved, Provectus can commence this study with or without assistance of a partner.
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