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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

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March 5, 2014
10:33 EDTOSUR, ABBV, MRK, GILDOraSure climbs after CMS proposes coverage of HCV tests
Shares of OraSure (OSUR), whose hepatitis C virus test has been approved by the FDA, are climbing after the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services yesterday proposed a rule that would enable Medicare and Medicaid to cover HCV tests in some circumstances. Orasure's OraQuick HCV test detects HCV antibodies in fingerstick and venipuncture whole blood. WHAT'S NEW: CMS proposed a rule under which the government would cover HCV tests that have been approved by the FDA. In order to be covered, the test must be ordered by beneficiaries' doctors, and performed by an eligible Medicare provider, CMS stated. Additionally, under the proposal the government would only cover tests for adult beneficiaries who are at high risk for HCV infection, and for those people born between 1945 and 1965. Individuals who have used illegal drugs or received blood transfusions before 1992 would be considered at risk individuals for the purposes of the rule, the agency stated. ANALYST REACTION: In a note to investors earlier today, Mizuho Securities analyst Peter Lawson wrote that the CMS' decision is positive for OraSure. The company has the largest exposure to HCV testing among publicly traded companies, the analyst indicated. The company could obtain over $1B of revenue by providing HCV tests for beneficiaries born between 1945 and 1965, the analyst estimated. Moreover, HCV drug developers will also use OraSure's test in the wake of CMS' decision, added Lawson, who reiterated a $9 price target and Outperform rating on the stock. PRICE ACTION: In early trading, OraSure climbed 11cv, or 1.5%, to $7.50. OTHERS TO WATCH: Companies developing HCV treatments include AbbVie (ABBV), Merck (MRK) and Gilead (GILD).
News For OSUR;ABBV;MRK;GILD From The Last 14 Days
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October 14, 2014
19:46 EDTABBVAbbVie board reconsidering recommendation to holders to accept Shire merger
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16:22 EDTGILDOn The Fly: Closing Wrap
The Wall Street averages were mixed after three of the U.S.'s largest banks reported on their quarterly results and Germany slashed its economic forecasts for this year and next. Following the mostly solid earnings reports from the banks and Dow member Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) investors appeared to breathe a sigh of relief and sent the averages higher in early trading. With oil prices falling almost 5% and settling at a recent low, the averages pared their gains and struggled in positive ground. Another late day slide ended with the averages mixed, as the Nasdaq led and the Dow lagged. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., the International Energy Agency said in its monthly oil market report that world oil demand growth would be weaker than previously expected. Afterward, WTI crude oil futures fell 4.6% at $81.84, marking their biggest percentage drop since late 2012 and the lowest settlement for the benchmark in over two years. The National Federation of Independent Business' small business optimism index came in at 95.3, versus the consensus expectation for a 95.8 reading. In Europe, Germany's government cut its forecasts for gross domestic product growth to 1.2% in 2014 and 1.3% next year from its prior view of 1.8% growth this year and 2% in 2015. COMPANY NEWS: The first of America's big banks issued their quarterly reports, with JPMorgan's (JPM) headline earnings per share coming in below analystsí consensus estimate, Wells Fargo (WFC) reporting in-line earnings and improved credit quality and Citigroup (C) posting better than expected adjusted third quarter profit. Citi, which also announced plans to pull back from retail banking in eleven countries and said it will disband a legacy Banamex unit after an investigation uncovered illegal conduct, saw its stock fare the best among the three, rising $1.57, or 3.15%, to $51.47... Another Dow member, Johnson & Johnson, reported better than expected profits and revenues and raised its FY14 EPS outlook, but its stock slid $2.11, or 2.13%, to $97.01. MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Domino's Pizza (DPZ), which rose $8.58, or 11.33%, to $84.30 after the pizza chain owner and franchisor reported better than expected third quarter earnings per share and revenue. Also higher was Skyworks (SWKS), which advanced $3.59, or 7.92%, to $48.91 after the supplier of chips to Apple (AAPL) raised its fourth quarter earnings per share outlook and revenue guidance. Among the noteworthy losers was Exactech (EXAC), which dropped $4.09, or 16.63%, to $20.50 after the company warned its Q3 income and revenue will likely miss its prior guidance. Also lower were shares of Gilead (GILD), which fell $4.26, or 4.2%, to $97.18 amid a number of developments. Competitor Johnson & Johnson said it would seek to make its own hepatitis C treatment accessible and "competitive," which some may have read as an indication of a potential price cut, and Ireland said it plans to close its "Irish Double" tax loophole, which currently benefits Gilead. INDEXES: The Dow slipped 5.88, or 0.04%, to 16,315.19, the Nasdaq rose 13.52, or 0.32%, to 4,227.17, and the S&P 500 added 2.96, or 0.16%, to 1,877.70.
16:00 EDTGILDOptions Update; October 14, 2014
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures down 40c to 39.11. Option volume leaders: AAPL TSLA TWTR AMZN GILD C JNJ AA NFLX PBR according to Track Data.
12:41 EDTABBV, GILDGilead retreats following Johnson & Johnson comments on HCV drug
Shares of Gilead (GILD), which has developed a hepatitis C treatment, are retreating after Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) said it would seek to make its own hepatitis C treatment accessible and competitive. Some investors believe that Johnson & Johnson's comments suggest that it will cut the price of its hepatitis C drug. WHAT'S NEW: Johnson & Johnson said on its earnings conference call today that it was "committed" to its treatment for hepatitis C virus, or HCV. The company added that it intends to remain competitive in the space and would look to make its HCV treatment, Olysio, accessible. In a separate development today, The Wall Street Journal reported that Abbvie (ABBV), which also has an HCV treatment, may have to consider pricing its HCV drug more aggressively after Gilead received FDA approval for Harvoni, the first combination pill approved to treat chronic HCV genotype 1 infection. One analyst quoted by The Journal, Roger Longman, said that AbbVie should consider pricing its drug at $76,000 for a 12 week regimen, representing a 20% discount to Harvoni, which will be priced at $94,500 for a full 12 week regimen. ANALYST REACTION: In a note to investors earlier today, RBC Capital analyst Michael Yee wrote that the weakness in Gilead's stock today has created a buying opportunity. Johnson & Johnson probably can't reduce the price of its Olysio drug much, since it is often used in combination with Gilead's Sovaldi, which costs $84,000 for 12 weeks, RBC Capital analyst Michael Yee wrote in a note to investors today. The price of AbbVie's treatment is unlikely to be much below Sovaldi's price, the analyst stated. WHAT'S NOTABLE: Gilead, along with a number of other drug companies, may also be under pressure because Ireland is reportedly closing its "Irish Double" tax loophole. Gilead is one of the companies that currently benefits from the "Irish Double," but Yee says that closing the loophole should only have a "minimal" impact on Gilead. PRICE ACTION: In early afternoon trading, Gilead fell 3.3% to $98.10, AbbVie gained 1.7% to $54.53 and Johnson & Johnson lost 0.6% to $98.52.
11:52 EDTGILDStocks with call strike movement; APC GILD
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11:23 EDTMRKBIND Therapeutics and The Conference Forum hold a conference
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11:10 EDTGILDGilead weakness today overdone, says Deutsche Bank
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10:51 EDTABBV, GILDGilead weakness a buying opportunity, says RBC Capital
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10:41 EDTGILDGilead weakness a buying opportunity, says RBC Capital
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10:11 EDTGILDGilead volatility increases on wide price movement
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10:05 EDTABBV, GILDAbbVie could cause Hep C price tipping point with aggressive pricing, WSJ says
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09:37 EDTGILDActive equity options trading on open
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09:14 EDTGILDJ&J sees FY14 pre-tax operating margin significantly improved vs. FY13
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October 13, 2014
16:02 EDTGILDOptions Update; October 13, 2014
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures up 3.71 to 39.56. Option volume leaders: AAPL TSLA TWTR AMZN FB NFLX SUNE GILD BAC PBR according to Track Data.
09:56 EDTGILDBernstein biotech analyst to hold an analyst/industry conference call
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09:23 EDTABBVAbbVie's Humira for hidradenitis suppurativa meets Phase 3 trial endpoint
AbbVie announced new results from PIONEER II, a pivotal Phase 3 study, demonstrating the effect of Humira in reducing common clinical signs and symptoms in moderate-to-severe hidradenitis suppurativa, specifically the number of abscesses and inflammatory nodules. The results of this study, in combination with previously presented results from PIONEER I, will contribute to worldwide regulatory filings for an expanded use of Humira, which is not currently approved by regulatory authorities for the treatment of HS.
08:36 EDTGILDGilead HARVONI launch should be strong, says BMO Capital
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07:56 EDTGILDGilead Harvoni pricing 'very reasonable,' says RBC Capital
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07:39 EDTABBV, GILDPharmaceutical Care Management Association to hold annual meeting
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07:37 EDTABBV, MRKAmerican Society of Anesthesiologists to hold annual meeting
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