Top 5 Biotech Stocks To Own For 2019

Biotech investing has always been an inherently risky business. On top of failed trials, recent political headline risk has added an additional reason for investor concern. Biotech investors may have dodged a bullet with Donald Trump emerging as the victor over Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election but they did not escape totally unharmed. The whole biotech sector was crushed in December 2016 when Donald Trump famously commented on the industry in his Time Magazine Person of the Year interview:

“I’m going to bring down drug prices. I don’t like what’s happening with drug prices.”

At first glance, comments like these should have biotech investors heading for the hills. Like many things, context may change initial perceptions.

First, consider the setting of the comments. This was not a tweet where the President-elect was free to choose any topic he wishes. This was an interview setting where Mr. Trump was answering pointed interview questions from a journalist and the journalist asked him his feeling on drug pricing. What did you expect him to say? Of course he is going to respond that he doesn’t like the current drug pricing environment. Drug companies make for an easy whipping boy in an era of populist politics. Read the interview. Trump gave a 15 word response, much shorter than his answer to any of the other topics covered. I get the impression that only the worst actors in the biotech/pharma space that are jacking up the prices of generic drugs have reason to fear a Trump presidency. Innovative companies that are curing disease should be safe under a president who has given every impression that he will be an ally of the business community.

Top 5 Biotech Stocks To Own For 2019: Alnylam Pharmaceuticals Inc.(ALNY)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Todd Campbell]

    Spark Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ONCE) reported its hemophilia A drug significantly reduced bleeding events and the need for prophylactic factor VIII infusions, but investors sold shares on worry that the gene therapy’s safety could be a problem. Investors similarly headed for the exits with Rite Aid (NYSE:RAD) and Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ALNY) after the former scuttled an attempt to sell itself and the latter secured a first-in-class FDA approval. Are these falling stocks worth buying?

  • [By Shane Hupp]

    Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ALNY) was downgraded by analysts at Zacks Investment Research from a hold rating to a sell rating. According to Zacks, “Although we are pleased with Alnylam’s broad and promising pipeline, we note that most candidates are in their early or mid stages of development. These candidates still have a long way to go before hitting the market. Currently, Alnylam depends heavily on Onpattro for growth. We also note that gaining approval for pipeline candidates has become more difficult now.  However,  In August, Alnylam got a significant boost with the approval of Onpattro (patisiran), a first-of-its-kind RNA interference (RNAi) therapeutic, both in the United States and in Europe, for the treatment of the polyneuropathy of hereditary transthyretin-mediated (hATTR) amyloidosis in adults. This is the first approved candidate for the company and hence should drive revenues. Loss estimates have remained stable ahead of the Q3 earnings release.”

  • [By Jim Crumly]

    As for individual stocks, shares of Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ALNY) fell despite the announcement of its first-ever drug approval, and those of Sysco (NYSE:SYY) rose on earnings.

  • [By Cory Renauer]

    Anyone who likes a good underdog story will want to keep their eye on Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:ALNY) and GW Pharmaceuticals PLC (NASDAQ:GWPH) through this year and next as they launch their first products in the U.S. Smaller biotechs have a terrible track record when it comes to launching new drugs on their own, but most analysts expect these companies to buck the trend and propel their recently approved drugs to blockbuster status within a few years.

  • [By Shane Hupp]

    Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ALNY) had its price target lowered by equities research analysts at Morgan Stanley from $107.00 to $99.00 in a report released on Friday. The firm presently has an “equal weight” rating on the biopharmaceutical company’s stock. Morgan Stanley’s price objective would indicate a potential upside of 3.97% from the stock’s current price.

  • [By Jim Crumly]

    Drug giant Pfizer released details of a successful trial of a drug for heart damage from a rare disease, and although that company’s stock had little reaction, falling 1.9%, shares of companies with potentially competing drugs reacted sharply. Alnylam Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ALNY) soared 16.2%, Ionis Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:IONS) jumped 7.8%, and Eidos Therapeutics (NASDAQ:EIDX) plunged 31.1%.

Top 5 Biotech Stocks To Own For 2019: Biogen Idec Inc(BIIB)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Dan Caplinger]

    Wall Street continued its downward streak on Monday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average falling more than 100 points. Most major benchmarks fell more modestly, with a few actually poking into positive territory on the day. Trade-sensitive stocks were among the weakest as investors focused on uncertainty related to tariff disputes between the U.S. and China. But for some other companies, bad news of a different sort was responsible for the drops in their shares. Biogen (NASDAQ:BIIB), Baytex Energy (NYSE:BTE), and Catalyst Biosciences (NASDAQ:CBIO) were among the worst performers on the day. Here’s why they did so poorly.

  • [By Brian Orelli]

    Data source: Ionis Pharmaceuticals.

    What happened with Ionis Pharmaceuticals this quarter?
    Royalties from Biogen (NASDAQ:BIIB) for sales of Spinraza came in at $57 million, more than double the year-ago quarter. The rest of the revenue comes from research and development revenue, which can vary from quarter to quarter due to milestone payments. In July, Ionis’ marketing partner Akcea Therapeutics (NASDAQ:AKCA) received EU approval for Tegsedi, the brand name for inotersen that treats hereditary transthyretin amyloidosis (ATTR). Earlier this month, Akcea licensed the Latin American rights to Tegsedi and Waylivra, which treats diseases with high lipid levels, to PTC Therapeutics (NASDAQ:PTCT); Ionis gets 60% of the milestone and royalty payments from PTC Therapeutics for Tegsedi and 50% of the payments for Waylivra. The larger loss came from an increase in R&D expenses, as Ionis and Akcea — which is still included in Ionis’ profit-loss statement because Ionis owns a majority stake — continue to advance Ionis’ pipeline. Selling, general, and administrative costs also increased as Akcea prepares to launch Tegsedi and Waylivra. Ionis’ balance sheet can certainly absorb the quarterly loss; the biotech ended the quarter with $2 billion in the bank thanks to its latest deal with Biogen, which is plenty to get by as it waits for revenue to start rolling in.

    Image source: Getty Images.

  • [By Cory Renauer]

    Biogen Inc.’s (NASDAQ:BIIB) Alzheimer’s disease hopeful topped the list last year, but repeated failures with experimental drugs that attack the disease from a similar angle have all flopped. Despite the risk, EvaluatePharma estimates aducanumab’s present value at around $8.4 billion and this figure will rise or fall dramatically when the company reads off results of ongoing pivotal trials, probably in early 2020.

  • [By George Budwell]

    Shares of large-cap biotech Biogen (NASDAQ:BIIB) gained a healthy 15.2% in July, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence. What triggered this breakout? 

  • [By Ethan Ryder]

    Russell Investments Group Ltd. boosted its holdings in Biogen (NASDAQ:BIIB) by 40.1% in the first quarter, according to its most recent filing with the SEC. The institutional investor owned 183,809 shares of the biotechnology company’s stock after buying an additional 52,654 shares during the period. Russell Investments Group Ltd.’s holdings in Biogen were worth $50,222,000 as of its most recent SEC filing.

  • [By Brian Orelli]

    Data source: Ionis Pharmaceuticals.

    What happened with Ionis Pharmaceuticals this quarter?
    Revenue increased thanks to $41 million in royalties from Biogen’s (NASDAQ:BIIB) sales of Spinraza, up from just $5 million in the year-ago quarter. Because the tiered royalty rates reset each year, the royalties as a percentage of sales will end up being higher in the quarters to come this year. Despite the higher revenue, earnings turned negative on a GAAP (generally accepted accounting principles) basis: Ionis and Akcea Therapeutics (NASDAQ:AKCA) increased spending in preparation for the launch of Tegsedi for hereditary transthyretin amyloidosis (hATTR), and Waylivra for familial chylomicronemia syndrome, a rare disease that causes the buildup of lipids. Ionis is still the majority owner of Akcea, so its financials are incorporated into Ionis’ financials. The Food and Drug Administration pushed back its goal for making a decision on the marketing application for Tegsedi (the new brand name for inotersen) to Oct. 6, 2018. Ionis provided additional data analysis that the FDA needs additional time to review. In April, Ionis signed another deal with Biogen to develop antisense drugs for neurological disorders. In the deal, Ionis gets $1 billion up front, including an equity investment, in exchange for Biogen having first choice of neurology targets on which to exclusively collaborate with Ionis. Biogen is paying for everything beyond the initial discovery stage, with Ionis eligible for royalties and milestone payments as the drugs advance.

    Image source: Getty Images.

Top 5 Biotech Stocks To Own For 2019: ArQule Inc.(ARQL)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Maxx Chatsko]

    Shares of development-stage biopharma ArQule (NASDAQ:ARQL) rose nearly 17% today after the company announced two appointments to its management team in two newly created positions. Dr. Marc Schegerin will serve as senior vice president, corporate strategy, communication, and finance. Dr. Shirish Hirani will serve as senior vice president, program management and product planning. 

  • [By Ethan Ryder]

    ArQule, Inc. (NASDAQ:ARQL) insider Value Fund L. P. Biotechnology sold 1,035,939 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, May 30th. The shares were sold at an average price of $5.00, for a total value of $5,179,695.00. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink.

  • [By Stephan Byrd]

    Get a free copy of the Zacks research report on ArQule (ARQL)

    For more information about research offerings from Zacks Investment Research, visit Zacks.com

  • [By Stephan Byrd]

    ArQule, Inc. (NASDAQ:ARQL) Director Ronald M. Lindsay acquired 23,900 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction on Thursday, May 10th. The stock was acquired at an average price of $2.67 per share, for a total transaction of $63,813.00. Following the purchase, the director now directly owns 43,900 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $117,213. The transaction was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available at this link.

  • [By Money Morning Staff Reports]

    But Blink and our other penny stocks to watch are unlikely to continue to lock in such spectacular gains in June. After looking at our 10 top penny stocks to watch this month, we’ll show you a small-cap stock with great profit potential in its future…

    Penny Stock Current Share Price Law Month’s Gain
     Blink Charging Co. (Nasdaq: BLNK) $7.07 439.85%
    Senes Tech Inc. (Nasdaq: SNES) $1.27 175.40%
    Vivis Inc. (Nasdaq: VVUS) $0.77 150.41%
    Adomani Inc. (Nasdaq: ADOM) $1.49 137.68%
    NF Energy Saving Co. (Nasdaq: NFEC) $2.34 134.88%
    Vaalco Energy Inc. (NYSE: EGY) $2.15 109.06%
    Heat Biologics Inc. (Nasdaq: HTBX) $2.35 99.12%
    ArQule Inc. (Nasdaq: ARQL) $4.88 90.74%
    LiqTech International Inc. (NYSE: LIQT) $0.66 85.60%
    Transenterix Inc. (NYSE: TRXC) $3.46 77.84%

    While last month’s gains are tremendous, they also illustrate the inherent dangers that come with investing in penny stocks.

Top 5 Biotech Stocks To Own For 2019: Amgen Inc.(AMGN)

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Stephan Byrd]

    Get a free copy of the Zacks research report on Amgen (AMGN)

    For more information about research offerings from Zacks Investment Research, visit Zacks.com

  • [By Max Byerly]

    Hammer Asset Management LLC purchased a new stake in Amgen, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMGN) during the second quarter, according to its most recent 13F filing with the SEC. The firm purchased 16,988 shares of the medical research company’s stock, valued at approximately $3,136,000. Amgen makes up 2.7% of Hammer Asset Management LLC’s holdings, making the stock its 13th largest holding.

  • [By Keith Speights]

    Amgen (NASDAQ:AMGN) has been the hands-down winner over Celgene (NASDAQ:CELG) in terms of stock performance over the last year. It’s the same story for revenue generated. Celgene beat Amgen in earnings, but only because of a technicality: Amgen incurred a big one-time tax hit in 2017.

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