Best Biotech Stocks To Own Right Now

Get your popcorn and settle in for a biotechnology Clash of the Titans. In one corner stands Celgene Corporation (NASDAQ:CELG), an oncology powerhouse on the rise. In the other corner stands Gilead Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ:GILD), an antiviral heavyweight that may be past its prime.

Celgene’s star may be rising, but you’ll need to pay a steep premium for the stock. Gilead’s shares, on the other hand, have been pushed down to bargain-basement levels.

Image source: Getty Images.

Placed side by side, which titan stands tallest? Read on to find out.

Celgene Corporation: Happy days ahead

A strong product lineup is driving Celgene’s top line up at a breakneck pace. Sales of the multiple myeloma drug Revlimid jumped 20% last year, and total product sales rose 22% over 2015 levels to $11.2 billion.

Although Revlimid makes up about 62% of total product sales, Celgene is becoming less dependent on its aging flagship therapy. Annual Pomalyst sales jumped 33% year on year, and the company’s first foray into the autoimmune disorder space, Otezla, more than doubled its top-line contribution, with a blockbuster $1.02 billion performance.

Best Biotech Stocks To Own Right Now: ArQule Inc.(ARQL)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Paul Ausick]

    ArQule Inc. (NASDAQ: ARQL) dropped about 23% Friday, to post a new 52-week low of $1.13 after closing at $1.47 on Thursday. The stock’s 52-week high is $2.17. Volume was about 15 times the daily average of around 150,000 shares. The biopharmaceutical company said this morning that a phase 3 trial of a cancer drug did not meet the primary endpoint of improving overall survival.

Best Biotech Stocks To Own Right Now: Medivation Inc.(MDVN)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    RBC’s Simos Simeonidis and Matthew Eckler try to find the right comparison for Pfizer’s (PFE) purchase of Medivation (MDVN):

    Scott Eisen/Bloomberg News

    We were obviously wrong with our Sector Perform rating: while we knew an M&A transaction was definitely a good possibility, we just could not get to this level of valuation using a realistic Xtandi model and thus could not recommend the stock. The only way for us to get to $81.50 (or even to $60-$70/share) would have been to assign very significant value to talazoparib. And we could not do that given the amount of available clinical evidence.Medivation shareholders who held on to their shares past the $50′s, did just that, were proven right and are now rewarded for it, since they believed that someone would be willing to pay for this asset just months ahead of Phase III data. The key question is why would a company be willing to part with what they claim/think may be a multibillion dollar drug that works in multiple cancers. We believe the obvious answer is because they’re smart and understand drug development risk better than most. We’ll know in a matter of months whether Pfizer/Medivation is like Amgen (AMGN)-Onyx (carfilzomib) or not.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Last night, Bloomberg reported that Sanofi (SNY) had made a bid for Medivation (MDVN) but had been rebuffed, while noting that other companies–perhaps Gilead Sciences (GILD), Amgen (AMGN) or AstraZeneca (AZN)?–were also on the prowl. SunTrust Robinson Humphrey’s Peter Lawson explains why Medivation might be biotech’s most wanted:

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Macro considerations have continued to weigh on stocks whenever they’ve shown signs of life and consensus estimates for many of the large cap companies have been declining. With the sector’s underperformance, the delta in the average PEG ratio for biotech growth companies (excluding Medivation (MDVN)) compared to non-biotech growth companies is slightly wider than it’s been for most of the year. As such, we remain constructive on the sector. That said, while valuations are attractive on a relative basis, there remains some uncertainty for the group and we would not be surprised to see the volatility continue…

  • [By Scott Rubin]

    Big gainers on the day included Intersil Corp (NASDAQ: ISIL), which jumped 20 percent on news of a buyout, and Medivation (NASDAQ: MDVN), which added 20 percent on a deal with Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) related to its cancer drug. Cotiviti Holdings Inc (NYSE: COTV) lost around 9 percent in the wake of a mid-day sell-off and Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE: MRO) fell 7 percent in the wake of a management shakeup.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Well, it looks like Medivation (MDVN) now has five suitors after reports that Amgen (AMGN) is joining Pfizer (PFE), Sanofi (SNY), AstraZeneca (AZN) and Novartis (NVS) in considering a bid. Maxim’s Jason Kolbert and Jason McCarthy offer their thoughts:

    Medivation reports tonight at 4:30pm…

    We expect the focus to be on the recent proposals from Sanofi (SNY $38.75- NR); Pfizer (PFE $33.40 -NR), AstraZeneca (AZN $28.26-NR) and just today, Amgen (AMGN – $154.18 – NR)…

    Medivation is returning to new highs as suitors line up to make acquisition bids. In this scenario what is the right discount rate for modeling purposes?

    We believe our model for Xtandi revenues is good, therefore we review our risk rating and determine the following: 30% = $47 15% = $76 10% = $99

    With Medivation’s board having now said No to anything less than $65 per share, it suggests to us that the stability and predictability of Xtandi’s revenues is greater than we thought, the risk is lower. Our intermediate risk rating is 15% or $76 fair value.

    Shares of Medivation rose 0.3% to $59.22 today, while Pfizer gained 0.5% to $33.56, Sanofi fell 0.5% to $39.07, AstraZeneca dropped 0.6% to $39.07, Novartis declined 0.3% to $74.12, and Amgen ticked up 0.1% to $154.25.

     

Best Biotech Stocks To Own Right Now: ARIAD Pharmaceuticals Inc.(ARIA)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    Healthcare shares gained around 0.73 percent in trading on Monday. Meanwhile, top gainers in the sector included Ariad Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARIA), and VCA Inc (NASDAQ: WOOF).

Best Biotech Stocks To Own Right Now: Amgen Inc.(AMGN)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Chris Lange]

    Amgen Inc. (NASDAQ: AMGN) is expected to report its most recent quarterly results on Wednesday. The consensus estimates call for $3.00 in EPS and $5.61 billion in revenue. Shares closed trading at $160.41 on Friday, in a 52-week range of $133.64 to $184.21. The consensus price target is $185.13.

  • [By WWW.THESTREET.COM]

    Finally on Friday, Tiffany (TIF) reports, and Cramer is betting on positive news now that the company has an activist involved. He was also bullish on Amgen’s (AMGN) analyst meeting, saying investors should use any market weakness earlier in the week to buy.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Three biotech stocks–Alexion Pharmaceuticals (ALXN), Amgen (AMGN), and Celgene (CELG)–reported earnings since yesterday’s close. But just one has seen its shares head higher after the announcement.

  • [By Keith Speights]

    Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD), Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE:BMY), and Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN) stand out as three of the most likely suitors for Incyte. Here’s why these big drugmakers could be interested in making a significant acquisition.

  • [By Chris Lange]

    Amgen Inc. (NASDAQ: AMGN) saw its short interest increase to 7.78 million shares from the previous level of 7.38 million. Shares closed most recently at $145.34, in a 52-week trading range of $133.64 to $176.85.

  • [By Stavros Georgiadis]

    Gilead Sciences (NSDQ:GILD) has underperformed the market with its stock price down almost 25% compared to a 10.33% gain in Nasdaq Composite (INDX:COMPX) and 14.60% gain of Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDX:INDU). Gilead and Amgen (NSDQ:AMGN)have had a very tough year, so it is interesting to know if now is the time to invest in GILD stock, not from a bottom fishing point of investing, which is often too risky, but on some solid financial and fundamentals arguments.

Best Biotech Stocks To Own Right Now: Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc.(ALNY)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Lisa Levin]

    Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ALNY) shares shot up 53 percent to $114.87 after the company impressed investors with encouraging data from a phase 3 clinical trial. Alnylam, a company dedicated towards treating a wide range of debilitating diseases through ribonucleic acid (RNA) interference (RNAi) therapeutics, said after Tuesday's market close that a phase 3 study called APOLLO met its primary efficacy endpoint and all secondary endpoints.

  • [By Chris Dier-Scalise]

    On Thursday, the Vetr crowd downgraded Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: ALNY) from 4.5 stars (Strong Buy), which was issued two days ago, to 3.5 stars (Hold). Crowd sentiment for Alnylam at the time of the downgrade was edging positive, with 66 percent of Vetr user rating bullish.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Yesterday, after markets closed, it was announced that US Federal District Court Judge Sue Robinson ruled to issue a permanent injunction against Praluent, the PCSK9 mAb for hypercholesterolemia from partners Regeneron and Sanofi, due to infringement of patents from Amgen. The court has imposed a 30-day suspension (stay) on the injunction to allow for settlement or appeal of the District Court decision. Sanofi and Regeneron have announced their intent to appeal the ruling to the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC). The injunction decision is consistent with our counter-consensus published views communicated on 25 January 2016 (“Downgrade to Sell on evidence of likely infringement of Amgen’s PCSK9 patents”) and subsequently. Based on consultation with expert legal counsel, we now put >75% probability Amgen will prevail on appeal and/or Praluent is ultimately removed from the US market, and/or Amgen achieves a settlement substantially in its favor. We currently model $3.3 bn in non-risk-adjusted 2022E US revenues for Praluent, while consensus models $1.2 bn in 2022E US revenues. We reiterate our view from 25 January 2016 to preferentially own Amgen, The Medicines Company (MDCO) (Buy), and Alnylam (ALNY) (Buy) over Regeneron for exposure to PCSK9 inhibitor market dynamics as outcomes trials approach.

Best Biotech Stocks To Own Right Now: Biogen Idec Inc(BIIB)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By WWW.MONEYSHOW.COM]

    Biogen (BIIB)

    Biogen discovers, develops and delivers innovative therapies for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases and autoimmune disorders.

  • [By Ben Levisohn]

    Biogen (BIIB) tumbled to the bottom of the S&P 500 today after getting cut by two analysts.

    Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

    Biogen dropped 4.7% to $278.96 at 4:19 p.m. today, while the S&P 500 declined 0.2% to 2,381.38.

    Leerinks Geoffrey Porges cited the “slower than expected ramp for Spinraza” in cutting Biogen to Market Perform from Outperform, while Morgan Stanly’s Matthew Harrison wrote that his decision to cut Biogen to Market Weight from Overweight was “not a downside call, but a timing call.”

    Biogen’s market capitalization fell to $60.2 billion today from $63.2 billion yesterday. It reported net income of $3.7 billion on sales of $10.2 billion in 2016.

    Barron’s Teresa Rivas recommended buying Biogen in December after the company released positive trial data on its Alzheimer’s drug.

  • [By Todd Campbell]

    A new and highly anticipated study byCelgene Corp. (NASDAQ:CELG) shows that its promising multiple sclerosis drug could soon reshape the $19 billion multiple sclerosis market. On Friday, management reported that ozanimod met its primary endpoint for reducing MS relapses better than Biogen Inc.’s (NASDAQ:BIIB) Avonex, and importantly, it did so without any new safety risks.

  • [By Brian Orelli]

    While that’s fine for clinical trials, it may make it difficult for Ionis’ drugs to compete with drugs that work as well but don’t have side effects that need to be monitored. Of course, for Spinraza, which Biogen (NASDAQ:BIIB) and Ionis recently got approved for spinal muscular atrophy, side effects aren’t an issue because there aren’t any other treatment options at the moment.

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