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August 14, 2014
17:41 EDTWFT, BHI, VRX, HES, WLLPoint72 Asset Management gives quarterly update on stakes
NEW STAKES: Baker Hughes (BHI), Whiting Petroleum (WLL), Valeant (VRX), Weatherford (WFT), and Hess (HES).
News For BHI;WLL;VRX;WFT;HES From The Last 14 Days
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September 25, 2015
13:03 EDTBHIBaker Hughes reports U.S. rig count down 4 to 838
Baker Hughes says that the U.S. Rig Count is down 4 rigs from last week to 838, with oil rigs down 4 to 640, gas rigs down 1 to 197, and miscellaneous rigs up 1 to 1. Says the U.S. Rig Count is down 1,093 rigs from last year at 1,931, with oil rigs down 952, gas rigs down 141, and miscellaneous rigs unchanged at 1. The U.S. Offshore rig count is 33, up 2 rigs from last week, and down 29 rigs year over year. The Canadian Rig Count is down 6 rigs from last week to 176, with oil rigs down 4 to 66, and gas rigs down 2 to 110. The Canadian Rig Count is down 253 rigs from last year at 429, with oil rigs down 180, and gas rigs down 73.
12:38 EDTVRXOptions with increasing implied volatility
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05:11 EDTVRXStocks with implied volatility movement; VRX CAT
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September 24, 2015
15:52 EDTHESOptions with increasing volume; RIG YNDX BLK BBBY TOL HES CC
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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 22, 2015
20:02 EDTVRXClinton vows $250 cap on monthly drug costs in blast against biotechs, insurers
Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton railed against biotech companies as well as health insurers at a community health care forum in Iowa on Tuesday. Clinton began her speech by praising the Affordable Care Act, but quickly noted that she wants to strengthen it due to what she called the rising cost of prescription drugs. She explained, "Our pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries deserve credit... [But] too often, these drugs cost a fortune. Now, sometimes there is a good reason for that. Scientific breakthroughs are often the result of major investment... so it may makes sense, for a short period of time, to have to charge a lot of money for a drug. But when a drug has no competition, when there aren't any other treatments that can do what it does, pharmaceutical companies can charge astronomical fees far beyond anything that it would take to recoup their investment, and far beyond what they charge consumers anywhere else in the world outside of America." Referencing the recent criticism against Turing Pharmaceuticals, Clinton went on to say that "pharmaceutical companies that acquire an existing affordable drug that people rely on, and then turn around and charge a fortune for it, [are just betting] on the fact that desperate people will find some way to pay for it." Preemptively responding to questions of whether greater regulation will dampen investment, Clinton commented that "some people worry that my proposals will threaten innovation, but I have designed a plan that will do exactly the opposite... Under my plan, drug companies that want to keep getting federal support will have to redirect more of their profits into meaningful investments in research and development." Clinton also criticized incremental drug improvements, saying that "too often, so-called new drugs are really old drugs that have just been tweaked a little bit, but then they're marketed as breakthrough drugs and they're sold for high prices." The Democratic candidate went on to condemn advertising in the drug industry, remarking that "I also want to tackle direct to consumer advertising... Other countries ban these ads because they are so often misleading. But at the very least, we shouldn't be encouraging them with corporate write-offs... Under my plan, we will instead use that taxpayer money to fund innovation... I would also like to make sure any ads the drug industry does run are approved by the FDA." Moving more broadly onto Medicaid and health insurers, Clinton stated, "I believe Medicare should be able to negotiate for lower prices for its members... I will require drug companies to provide higher rebates for prescription drugs to low income Medicare patients, just like they have to do for Medicaid patients... I think the insurance companies need to be put on notice." Providing more concrete details of her plan, Clinton concluded, "I will cap out of pocket drug costs for working families. You won't have to pay more than $250 a month for covered medications... Particularly for people who have a chronic illness. Also under my plan, you will be able to import cheaper drugs from other countries legally. If the medicine you need costs less in Canada, you should be able to buy it from Canada or any other country that meets our safety standards... I will also make sure we have more generics on the market [by boosting funding for] the FDA's office of generic drugs."
17:35 EDTVRXHillary Clinton vows to cap out-of-pocket drug costs at $250 per month
Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said in a tweet that, "Under my plan, I'll cap out-of-pocket drug costs for families. You won't have to pay more than $250/month for covered medications." Reference Link
16:36 EDTWFTOn The Fly: Top stock stories for Tuesday
Stocks on Wall Street began the session sharply lower and remained that way throughout the session. There was little in the way of buying as each of the major equity indexes slid over 1% and the market internals were decidedly negative. The auto industry and biotech sector were both notably weak, after the French government called for an investigation into the entire auto industry in the wake of the Volkswagen (VLKAY) emissions scandal and Democratic Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton presented a plan to limit the cost of drugs for consumers. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., the FHFA home price index rose 0.6% to 224.5 in July, which was better than the 0.4% rise that was expected. The Richmond Fed factory index fell to -5 in September, versus the reading of 2 that was expected. In Asia, the Asian Development Bank cut its growth forecast for the region, citing a weaker outlook for China and India and a delayed recovery in the world's advanced economies. The bank now sees the Chinese economy growing 6.8% this year and 6.7% next year, down from its previous forecasts of 7.2% and 7%, respectively. COMPANY NEWS: Lloyd Blankfein, Goldman Sachs (GS) Chairman and CEO, disclosed that he was diagnosed with lymphoma. "Fortunately, my form of lymphoma is highly curable and my doctors' and my own expectation is that I will be cured," Blankfein stated in an open letter that was shared by the bank... Bank of America (BAC) shareholders approved a proposal to ratify the 2014 amendments to the company's bylaws that permitted the board of directors to determine its leadership structure, meaning Brian Moynihan can retain his dual role as both Chairman and CEO... Shares of several fertilizer companies slid after Mosaic (MOS) announced it will reduce its potash production in response to current crop nutrient market conditions, primarily related to delayed fertilizer purchases in Brazil and North America. Shares of Mosaic finished the day down 7% at $33.87 following last night's announcement, while Potash (POT) fell 6.5% and Agrium (AGU) dropped 3.5%. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Ashland (ASH), which advanced $2.78, or 2.6%, to $108.50 after announcing it will proceed with a plan to separate into two independent, publicly traded companies. Also higher was Weatherford (WFT), which gained 90c, or 10.7%, to $9.31 after cancelling plans for a public share offering, after which research firms Jefferies and Iberia both reiterated Buy-equivalent ratings on the stock. Among the noteworthy losers were Office Depot (ODP) and Staples (SPLS), which declined a respective 4% and 5.8% after the New York Post quoted a source as saying the FTC may move to block their merger plan. Also lower was Groupon (GRPN), which slipped 2.2% to $4.08 after announcing plans to cut 1,100 jobs related primarily to its international operations. ConAgra (CAG), Carnival (CCL), and CarMax (KMX) fell 7%, 5.5%, and 4.65%, respectively, following their quarterly earnings reports. INDEXES: The Dow fell 179.72, or 1.09%, to 16,330.47, the Nasdaq lost 72.23, or 1.5%, to 4,756.72, and the S&P 500 dropped 24.23, or 1.23%, to 1,942.74.
14:14 EDTWFT, BHIWeatherford spikes after cancelling share offering
Shares of Weatherford (WFT) spiked Tuesday after the company cancelled plans for a public share offering, saying it was "unwilling to sell securities at prices that do not reflect the value" created at the company. Several analysts weighed in on the news, appearing generally bullish on the company but disagreeing on whether Weatherford should focus on its own operations or continue to pursue acquisitions. FOCUS ON FUNDAMENTALS: Jefferies analyst Brad Handler reiterated his Buy rating and $13 price target on Weatherford shares, explaining that the capital increase plans would likely have gone towards buying Halliburton (HAL) drilling assets at an "unattractive" price point. Note that Halliburton is conducting various asset divestitures as part of its planned takeover of Baker Hughes (BHI), with Bloomberg reporting on September 14 that Weatherford had made a bid for the service portion of Halliburton's Sperry Drilling unit. In today's note, Handler acknowledged that the potential acquisition would add some "meaningful" synergies on paper, but he also highlighted the risk of further diluting Weatherford share value. Handler concluded that he is generally more comfortable with a Weatherford "that walks before it runs," adding that he hopes the company "continues to resist the temptation" of large acquisitions amid the current sector downturn. ACQUISITION POTENTIAL: Iberia analyst Robert MacKenzie said he is a buyer of Weatherford shares after Monday's 17% selloff prior to the capital raise cancellation last night. Although an acquisition by Weatherford is less likely without the funds from the public offering, it is still possible, "especially considering that no mention of backing away from their acquisition intent was made in the most recent press release," MacKenzie noted. However, Weatherford's press release announcing the capital raise specifically cited the need to pre-fund potential acquisitions, while its cancellation notice emphasized a focus on core businesses and efficient operations. Nevertheless, MacKenzie argued that Halliburton "remains a motivated seller" and called Weatherford the "most logical" candidate to pick up the company's previously-mentioned assets, saying the potentially transformative acquisition would make "tremendous sense." PRICE ACTION: Weatherford shares are up more than 8.5% to $9.13 in intraday trading after falling throughout yesterday's session on the company's initial decision to pursue a public offering.
12:14 EDTWFTOn The Fly: Top stock stories at midday
Stocks began the session deep in negative territory and have remained there throughout the morning. There has been little in the way of buying as the downward pressure in the market has not shown any sign of letting up. There is also little in the way of explanation as to why the market is so weak other than continued disappointment in the Fed's interest rate decision and the ongoing concern over China's economic growth. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., the FHFA home price index rose 0.6% to 224.5 in July, which was better than the 0.4% rise that was expected. The Richmond Fed factory index fell to -5 in September, versus the reading of 2 that was expected. COMPANY NEWS: Shares of Groupon (GRPN) slumped 2.5% after the online and mobile deal provider said it plans to cut more than 1,000 jobs relating primarily to the company's international operations. The news is the latest in a recent run of job cut announcements, after HP Enterprise said last week that it expects 25,000-30,000 people to leave the company and Johnson Controls (JCI) recently announced plans to reduce its global salaried workforce by as many as 3,000 people... Lloyd Blankfein, Goldman Sachs (GS) chairman and CEO, disclosed that he was told by doctors that he has lymphoma. "Fortunately, my form of lymphoma is highly curable and my doctors' and my own expectation is that I will be cured," Blankfein stated in an open letter that was shared by the bank. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Weatherford (WFT), which rose 9.6% after stating that it has decided not to pursue its previously announced concurrent public offerings of ordinary shares of the company and mandatorily exchangeable subordinated notes. Also higher was Vascular Biogenics (VBLT), which gained 15% to around $9.30 per share after the stock was initiated with a Buy rating and $25 price target at Chardan. Among the noteworthy losers following their earnings reports were ConAgra (CAG) and Carnival (CCL), which each fell more than 5%, and Red Hat (RHT), which slid 2%. Also lower were shares of Staples (SPLS) and Office Depot (ODP), which fell 7% and 8%, respectively, after the New York Post said a top FTC regulator may be leaning toward recommending against approving their merger agreement. INDEXES: Near midday, the Dow was down 263.77, or 1.6%, to 16,246.42, the Nasdaq was down 99.52, or 2.06%, to 4,729.44, and the S&P 500 was down 32.51, or 1.65%, to 1,934.46.
09:20 EDTWFTOn The Fly: Pre-market Movers
HIGHER: Ashland (ASH), up 4% after announcing that its board has approved proceeding with a plan to separate Ashland into two independent, publicly traded companies: the new Ashland, a provider of specialty chemical solutions, and Valvoline, which will focus on building the world's leading engine and automotive maintenance business... Solera Holdings (SLH), up 3% after Bloomberg reported that IHS (IHS) is considering besting Vista Equity Partners' $55.85 per share offer for Solera. Shares of IHS are up xxx% following the report... Weatherford (WFT), up 11% after stating that it has decided not to pursue its previously announced concurrent public offerings of ordinary shares of the company and mandatorily exchangeable subordinated notes. DOWN AFTER EARNINGS: Carnival (CCL), down 3.7%. ALSO LOWER: Groupon (GRPN), down 0.7% after announcing plans to cut 1,100 jobs relating primarily to the company's international operations... New Mountain Finance (NMFC), down 4% after its 5M share spot secondary priced at $14.14 per share... Memorial Resource Development (MRD), down 4% after announcing it acquired additional acreage in North Louisiana and pricing its 12M share spot secondary at $17.60 per share.
09:10 EDTWFTIberia says to buy Weatherford following yesterday's selloff
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08:23 EDTVRXAnalysts say buy select biotech stocks ahead of Clinton drug plan
Ahead of Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton laying out her plan to tackle "price gouging" in the specialty drug market at an event in Iowa later today, analysts at research firms Jefferies and Piper Jaffray are recommending select biotech stocks that they view as buys amid the weakness in the space. DEBATE: Biotech stocks broadly declined yesterday, with the NASDAQ Biotechnology index (IBB) sliding roughly 4.4%, after privately-held Turing Pharmaceuticals made headlines by enacting a 5,000% price increase on a 62-year-old drug that fights complication of AIDS and cancer. Furor around the sudden price hike for Turing's Daraprim reignited a debate around drug prices that previously embroiled costly Hepatitis C drugs including AbbVie's (ABBV) Viekira Pak and Gilead's (GILD) Sovaldi and Harvoni. The news also follows Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders issuing a letter in August to Valeant (VRX) and Pfizer's (PFE) Hospira, in which he requested information on the "enormous" price increases of two drugs Valeant acquired earlier in the year. Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton sent the debate to center stage yesterday by criticizing the "outrageous" prices of specialty drugs and promising to lay out a plan today to tackle "price gouging" in the specialty drug market. Clinton's proposal, which she'll outline in a speech in Iowa later today, would force pharmaceutical companies to reinvest their profits into research, allow for more generic and imported drugs and allow Medicare to negotiate lower drug costs and cap out-of-pocket expenses, according to details of the plan shared with USA Today. Zeke Emanuel, chair of medical ethics and health policy at the University of Pennsylvania, appeared on Nightly Business Report to discuss the problem of high drug prices and his suggested solutions. During his interview, Emanuel contended that giving Medicare the ability to negotiate drug prices may drive up prices for everyone else. DEFENSES: The Jefferies Biotechnology research team, led by Brian Abrahams, Eun Yang and Biren Amin, say their Washington D.C. consultants indicate the recent political rhetoric around drug pricing is unlikely to result in any substantive future policy changes that would impact biotech sector fundamentals. As such, they recommend using yesterday's selloff to buy select companies including Celgene (CELG), BioMarin (BMRN) and Alkermes (ALKS). Pricing concerns are nothing new, and will likely continue to be a headwind for the sector, the analysts tell investors in a research note. Hillary Clinton's proposal to combat drug pricing is likely to include "some combination of old and tried policies that have been out there for a few years," they write. The analysts also like shares of AMAG Pharmaceuticals (AMAG), Alder Biopharmaceuticals (ALDR) and Cempra (CEMP). Meanwhile, Piper Jaffray analyst Edward Tenthoff recommends buying shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals (VRTX) following yesterday's selloff. Tenthoff believes that drugs like Vertex's Orkambi will maintain premium pricing because of the disease modifying value to patients and payors. Orkambi is approved to treat cystic fibrosis in patients 12 years and older. The analyst reiterates an Overweight rating on Vertex with a $163 price target. DOWNGRADE: Brean Capital analyst Difei Yang downgraded Horizon Pharma (HZNP) to Hold saying "unsettling recent developments" make the stock's premium valuation no longer justified. The public discussion on high drug prices is a negative for the company while its attempt to acquire Depomed (DEPO) is unlikely to result in a completed deal, Yang tells investors in a research note. Further, Horizon's prescription trends are showing weakness, said Yang, who views the stock as more risky than in the past. PRICE ACTION: Horizon closed yesterday down $2.93, or 9.2%, at $28.99, while Vertex dropped $5.97, or 4.8%, to $118.19. A number of the biggest stocks in biotechnology were also weak yesterday, with Gilead sliding about 2.5%, Amgen (AMGN) dropping 2.3%, Celgene declining 2.8% and Biogen (BIIB) falling more than 5.5%.
08:12 EDTWFTWeatherford should also back away from large deals, says Jefferies
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08:02 EDTWFTWeatherford volatility up into cancels public offerings
Weatherford September weekly call option implied volatility is at 91, October is at 75; compared to its 52-week range of 30 to 94, suggesting large price movement into cancels public offerings of ordinary shares and subordinated notes.
07:45 EDTWFTGlobal Hunter Securities to hold a bus tour
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06:19 EDTVRXClinton to roll out plan to rein in prescription drug costs, USA Today reports
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06:16 EDTWFTWeatherford cancels public offerings of ordinary shares and subordinated notes
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05:18 EDTVRXBausch + Lomb and Nicox announce FDA acceptance of NDA for VESNEO
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05:07 EDTWFTStocks with implied volatility movement; AVP WFT
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