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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
June 3, 2014
10:09 EDTCNC, GILD, WCGCentene, WellCare decline after analyst rejects takeover speculation
Shares of Medicaid plan operators Centene (CNC) and WellCare (WCG) are declining after Citigroup wrote that Ascension Health is not buying a publicly traded Medicaid health plan, as was previously rumored. Ascension Health is a nonprofit healthcare provider. Citigroup cut its rating on Centene to Sell from Neutral in a note to investors earlier today. WHAT'S NEW: Ascension Health is not buying a publicly traded Medicaid plan, as some had speculated last week, Citigroup analyst Carl McDonald stated. Last week Ascension's CEO reportedly said that it was in talks to acquire an unnamed insurance company that operates in 18 states, leading research firm Leerink to speculate that Ascension was likely looking to buy WellCare or that it may be interested in buying Centene. But McDonald rejected both scenarios, as he reported that Ascension recently wrote that the purchase price of the insurer it was poised to buy would not be material. Meanwhile, after rising 6% over the last week, Centene's stock doesn't seem to be adequately reflecting the risk to the company's earnings over the near-term, contended McDonald. The cost of Gilead's (GILD) Sovaldi hepatitis C drug, along with the addition of new markets with low profit margins, are likely to weigh on Centene's earnings, the analyst wrote. The long-term outlook for Medicaid remains positive, but Centene's stock is likely to reach a more favorable entry point in the future, according to McDonald, who has a $65 price target on the stock. PRICE ACTION: In early trading, Centene fell 3.5% to $73 and WellCare gave back 2% to $76.
News For CNC;WCG;GILD From The Last 14 Days
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July 27, 2015
11:57 EDTGILDStocks with call strike movement; FB GILD
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10:00 EDTCNCOn The Fly: Analyst Upgrade Summary
Today's noteworthy upgrades include: ADT Corp. (ADT) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Citi... AGCO (AGCO) upgraded to Neutral from Sell at Goldman... Anthem (ANTM) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Sterne Agee CRT... BNP Paribas (BNPQY) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Goldman... Biogen (BIIB) upgraded on valuation at Bernstein... Box (BOX) upgraded to Overweight from Sector Weight at Pacific Crest... Capital One (COF) upgraded to Buy from Outperform at CLSA... Centene (CNC) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at UBS... Chesapeake (CHK) upgraded on potential sale of assets or company at SunTrust... Cigna (CI) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Sterne Agee CRT... Deere (DE) upgraded to Neutral from Sell at Goldman... First BanCorp (FBP) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Guggenheim... Flotek (FTK) upgraded on stronger demand at Oppenheimer... Lear (LEA) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank... Methanex (MEOH) upgraded to Outperform from Sector Perform at Scotia Howard Weil... News Corp. (NWSA) upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at Macquarie... NextEra Energy Partners (NEP) upgraded to Outperform at Wells Fargo... OFG Bancorp (OFG) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Guggenheim... PennyMac Mortgage (PMT) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Compass Point... Pool Corp. (POOL) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at William Blair... Popular (BPOP) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Guggenheim... Qualcomm (QCOM) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley... Quality Systems (QSII) upgraded on valuation at RBC Capital... VF Corp. (VFC) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at Goldman... Ventas (VTR) upgraded on valuation, positive catalysts at BMO Capital... Weatherford (WFT) upgraded to Equal Weight from Underweight at Barclays... SS&C (SSNC) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Sandler O'Neill... Chemung Financial (CHMG) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Sandler O'Neill... Cameron (CAM) upgraded to Buy from Accumulate at Global Hunter.
08:42 EDTGILDGilead July weekly volatility increases into Q2 and outlook
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07:33 EDTCNCCentene upgraded to Buy from Neutral at UBS
UBS upgraded Centene to Buy from Neutral citing recent share weakness, its strong pipeline and other underappreciated opportunities. UBS maintained its $80 price target on Centene shares.
05:56 EDTGILDStocks with implied volatility movement; CRM GILD
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July 24, 2015
06:27 EDTGILDGilead price target raised to $131 from $120 at Piper Jaffray
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July 23, 2015
12:45 EDTGILDGilead July weekly volatility elevated into Q2 and outlook
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July 22, 2015
08:47 EDTCNCCentene weakness creates buying opportunity, says BMO Capital
BMO Capital believes that Centene's (CNC) earnings can increase 24% year-over-year in the near-term, driven by predictable levels of medical cost and continued membership growth. Over the longer term, the firm thinks that the company's acquisition of HealthNet (HNT), large addressable markets, cost synergies and improved positioning in California leave it well-positioned to increase its earnings.
July 21, 2015
14:12 EDTGILDGilead reports study of E/C/F/TAF met primary endpoint
Gilead Sciences announced detailed 48-week data from an open-label Phase 3 study evaluating its investigational once-daily single tablet regimen of elvitegravir 150 mg, cobicistat 150 mg, emtricitabine 200 mg and tenofovir alafenamide 10 mg, or E/C/F/TAF, among 1,436 virologically suppressed adult patients switching from tenofovir disoproxil fumarate-containing regimens. The study met its primary endpoint by demonstrating non-inferiority of E/C/F/TAF to the TDF-based regimens at Week 48. The study also demonstrated statistical superiority among patients with HIV-1 RNA levels less than 50 copies/mL at Week 48 and statistically significant improvements in bone and renal laboratory parameters. These data were presented in an oral session at the 8th IAS Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment & Prevention in Vancouver, Canada. Among the 1,436 patients who were randomized in the study, virologic success rates at Week 48 were higher in patients taking E/C/F/TAF, 97% versus 93% for all TDF-based regimens; difference in percentages: 4.1%, 95% CI: 1.6% to 6.7%. The rates of virologic failure were similar between the two arms, with E/C/F/TAF, 1.0% and TDF-based regimen, 1.3%. General safety was similar between the two arms through 48 weeks of treatment, with similar percentages of patients in each group having any adverse events. Adverse events leading to treatment discontinuation were more common among patients treated with a TDF-based regimen.
10:01 EDTCNCOn The Fly: Analyst Downgrade Summary
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08:28 EDTCNCCentene downgraded to Sell from Neutral at Goldman
Goldman downgraded Centene (CNC) to Sell with a $69 price target. The firm's analyst believes Centene's acquisition of Health Net (HNT) is a signal of slower organic growth and makes the company a less likely M&A target. Goldman sees increasing execution risk given complex deal integration and lowered its price target to $69 from $73 on shares.
July 20, 2015
07:33 EDTGILDInternational AIDS Society to hold a conference
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July 17, 2015
10:21 EDTGILDCigna says 98.4% of customers treated with hep C drug Harvoni are cured
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09:03 EDTGILDGilead granted orphan status for gastric cancer treatment
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July 16, 2015
19:17 EDTCNC, WCGAffordable Care Act plan prices to increase 11.2% in 2016, WSJ says
State regulators will begin approving plan price increases for insurance plans purchased on Care Actís exchanges as early as this month, reports the Wall Street Journal. Nearly every state has plans with premiums increasing over 10%, with some as high as 30%-50%, the Journal adds. Publicly traded companies in the space include Aetna (AET), Anthem (ANTM), Centene (CNC), Cigna (CI), Health Net (HNT), Humana (HUM), Molina Healthcare (MOH), UnitedHealth (UNH) and WellCare (WCG). Reference Link
09:22 EDTGILDBristol-Myers says EU approves Evotaz for treatment of HIV-1 infection in adults
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July 15, 2015
10:01 EDTCNCOn The Fly: Analyst Upgrade Summary
Today's noteworthy upgrades include: AGCO (AGCO) upgraded to Market Perform from Underperform at Wells Fargo... Anglo American (AAUKY) upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at Credit Suisse... Avis Budget (CAR) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank... Brookfield Renewable (BEP) upgraded to Neutral from Underperform at Credit Suisse... CSX (CSX) upgraded to Outperform from Sector Perform at RBC Capital... Centene (CNC) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Jefferies... Commerce Bancshares (CBSH) upgraded to Market Perform at Raymond James... Entegris (ENTG) upgraded to Buy at Craig-Hallum... Guess (GES) upgraded to Market Perform from Underperform at Telsey Advisory... Hertz (HTZ) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Deutsche Bank... Iberdrola (IBDRY) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Societe Generale... Liberty Global (LBTYA) upgraded to Conviction Buy from Buy at Goldman... LinkedIn (LNKD) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Barclays... Lonmin (LNMIY) upgraded to Neutral from Sell at Goldman... Navient (NAVI) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Barclays... NetApp (NTAP) upgraded to Sector Weight from Underweight at Pacific Crest... Omnicom (OMC) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Wells Fargo... PTC Therapeutics (PTCT) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JPMorgan... Panera Bread (PNRA) upgraded to Overweight from Underweight at Piper Jaffray... Primerica (PRI) upgraded to Strong Buy from Market Perform at Raymond James... Sands China (SCHYY) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Barclays... Seagate (STX) upgraded to Buy at Craig-Hallum... Western Digital (WDC) upgraded to Buy from Hold at Craig-Hallum... Wolseley (WOSYY) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JPMorgan.
07:58 EDTGILDAnalysts break down impact of $7.2B Receptos buyout
After Celgene (CELG) announced last night that the company has agreed to acquire Receptos (RCPT) for $232 per share in cash, or a total of about $7.2B net of cash acquired, research firms have chimed in with their opinions on how the proposed deal may impact others in the biotech space. Receptos key asset is Ozanimod, which is being studied in Phase III trials for relapsing multiple sclerosis and ulcerative colitis. DERIVATIVE CALLS: Piper Jaffray analyst Edward Tenthoff told investors that he views Celgene's deal for Receptos as good for Arena Pharmaceuticals (ARNA). The analyst notes that Arena's APD334 is already showing dose-dependent decreases in circulating lymphocyte counts and that the company will initiate Phase II studies in ulcerative colitis and Crohn's disease this year. Tenthoff reiterates an Overweight rating and $7.50 price target on Arena, which has a market capitalization around $1B and closed yesterday up 8c to $4.47. In its own note to investors this morning, Nomura said Celgene's deal could put downward pressure on Biogen's (BIIB) long-term multiple sclerosis estimates. Nomura's M. Ian Somaiya contended that one-year Phase II efficacy data for Ozanimod looked as good as Novartisís (NVS) Gilenya and Biogen's Tecfideraís Phase III at year 2. Somaiya also wondered if rival Gilead (GILD) could be "looking for something bigger" than Receptos for its own deal, telling investors that the firm views Incyte (INCY) as Gilead's most likely takeout target. Incyte's shares closed up $4.46 at $117.46 yesterday, giving the company a market cap of about $20B. RIVAL BID?: Wedbush analyst Liana Moussatos believes another bidder may seek to acquire Receptos, noting that she previously estimated Receptos could be valued at $348 per share, or about $10.9B, in a buyout. Moussatos noted that Celgene said it expects annual peak sales for Ozanimod to reach about $4B-$6B for RMS and UC, making its acquisition price of $7.2BN only a bit more than about 1X peak sales without accounting for other possible indications or the rest of its pipeline. Moussatos told investors she sees "plenty" of potential upside to justify a rival bidder stepping in and reiterated the firm's Outperform rating on Receptos shares. PRICE ACTION: In pre-market trading, Receptos rose 10% to $228.61 while Gilead gained 1.4% to about $119 per share.
07:24 EDTCNCHealth Net downgraded to Hold from Buy at Jefferies
Jefferies downgraded Health Net (HNT) to Hold following the acquisition by Centene (CNC).
07:23 EDTCNCCentene upgraded to Buy from Hold at Jefferies
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