Questcor Pharmaceuticals (QCOR) is definitely one biotech company to be on the lookout for. Over the past few months, Questcor has been riding a single drug all the way to the bank, and even with signs of a slowdown, Questcor is still a major contender in the minor leagues of biotech companies.
Questcor's drug Acthar is used in the treatment of a few different disorders, including multiple sclerosis, infantile spasms and nephrotic syndrome. Although Questcor did not see a rise equivalent, in dollar terms, to bigger name companies producing world changing drugs, it definitely saw a rise that would make any investor excited for gains.
After a quick fall that occurs after such an instantaneous jump, the stock rose again and eventually began to even out around $38. While growth may be slowing at this point, expect Questcor to hang around its current price as the market for Acthar gel is quite the niche. While this may seem like a downside, there are not many other options for the type of treatment that Acthar provides, so sales will hit an amount that will stay constant, allowing a regular source of income into Questcor that will assist in developing a lower leverage for future investments.
While all this is, of course, great for someone who already has Questcor, I would suggest avoiding purchasing stock in the company at the moment because its price is still high from the release of the drug. Wait until the stock is more stable to make a purchase, assuming the next drug that is in the future for the company has a good outlook.
So, since Questcor is out at the immediate moment, let's look at Jazz Pharmaceuticals (JAZZ). Recently, Jazz has had raises in stocks because of a couple of occurrences. These big moves involved Jazz purchasing its smaller rival Azur Pharma and partnering with its new additions auditors. By moving from KPMG to Ernst & Young, Jazz has ended a two-year relationship.
Another event that assisted in the price rise was the recent Swinging for Sleep campaign. When performing public functions such as these, we see a price rise that correlates due to the good press and general good feelings that people in general receive from this kind of news. These moves have contributed to the rising price of Jazz that seems to signify the interest of many investors into the relatively small pharmaceutical company that is Jazz.
As of right now, expect to see its prices decrease slightly as it evens out from the recent acquisition of Azur and auditor change that seems to have enticed so many investors. So, as for the short run, avoid Jazz due to a correction that will arrive soon when the news storm calms down around the company. Jazz's long-term future, on the other hand, is rather uncertain due to a lack of development news.
Another pharmaceutical company that has been on everyone's radar is Spectrum Pharmaceuticals (SPPI). And Spectrum has been on the rise for good reason, its newest drug, Apaziquone, was recently up for Phase III testing. As expected, prices shot up in a matter of a couple of days. This get-rich-quick risk turned out to be a rather big bust due to the Phase III failure that has most likely cost the company any acceptance from the FDA anytime soon.
To be more specific in the Phase III testing failure, the drug simply did not perform as displayed by a tumor recurrence in the bladder that the drug is supposed to be treating the cancer in. While this failure of the new drug is nowhere near a good thing for anyone invested in Spectrum, the purchase of Allos Therapeutics, Inc. offset the bad news, and possibly the decrease of stock prices. So, where is Spectrum to go from here?
Well, the perfect timing of the failure/success has offset the drop that inevitably comes from every drug failure. Definitely keep an eye on this stock as the acquisition of Allo could allow Spectrum to regain a foothold and begin developing a new drug, or even fixing Apaziquone. So, I would allow the drop to level out over a short period of time. Then I would suggest purchasing some stock in Spectrum due to the success of the company it just purchased, possibly allowing it to make a long-term comeback.
Antares Pharma (AIS) is another company that is definitely a great purchase to make at this time. With stock prices rising and the upgrade from sell to hold, expect to see Antares on a continuous rise. As of right now, the company is at a seven-year high. It is also acquiring rises through use of notable public events, such as the recent announcement that Antares will present at the 11th Annual Needham Healthcare Conference.
While the company did have a number of bad years, I feel that as of right now, due to much better public awareness, the recent success of the companies topical gel, and increase investor confidence, the only way for Antares to go is up. While the short-term may seem relatively unchanged, I can assure you that over the next few years, we will see Antares make a big jump. It can easily get out of the low price slump that has plagued the company for such a long time, and you should be there when it's time for the company's big rise.
The only thing that could possibly halt or otherwise change the company's current direction is the failure of a drug or other bad business deal. So, while it is still a gamble at this point, I would suggest having a hand in Antares stock. The stock will likely provide a great opportunity by rising in the next few years.
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.