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A Review Of Gilead's Harvoni, And Competitive Considerations
- Last Friday, Gilead Sciences received FDA marketing approval for Harvoni, its two-drug combination product for hepatitis C genotype 1.
- Harvoni is a breakthrough treatment for this serious disease.
- Harvoni's Prescribing Information reveals that a course of treatment with Harvoni is safe, easy to comply with, and highly effective.
- My view is that Harvoni plus Sovaldi is a formidable product line that will be difficult for AbbVie and others to compete against.
Why I'm Not Buying The Dip In Domestic Energy Stocks
- Oil has entered a bear market.
- Speculators on the futures exchange have held to a strong bullish posture, however.
- Domestic energy plays have taken big hits in the stock market, and right now I am standing clear of these stocks, even those of high quality companies.
Additional Bullish Portents For Treasuries
- Enough news has occurred in less than a week to document it in another article on Treasuries.
- To me, this news provides accelerating positive arguments for lower Treasury rates, though this is not a day-to-day timing call.
- All this is consistent with the Taper following the pattern set at the end of QE 1 and QE 2.
'Bullish On Bonds' - An Update
- Treasury bonds may be well-positioned to rally further as QE ends, surprising consensus.
- This would reprise their action after QE 1 and QE 2 ended.
- Recent data affecting bonds is favorable as I see it.
- This article updates my case for interest rate bullishness from late August.
Update: Portola Reports Positive Phase 3 Results And A Secondary Stock Offering
- Two material events have moved shares of development-stage Portola in opposing directions.
- First, the company reported strongly positive results in its first Phase 3 study of its anticoagulant reversal agent, andexanet - and the stocked jumped.
- After announcing the good news, a secondary stock offering was announced, priced under the market price at the time - and the stock dropped (then popped).
- The positive Phase 3 data was in line with my expectation expressed in my July article.
- The equity raise was not previously addressed by me, but the need for additional capital should be no surprise, and I remain long this risky stock with patience.
The Importance Of TAF To Gilead
- Gilead reported positive Phase 3 results last week on its new version of tenofovir, an anti-viral agent for HIV and hepatitis B.
- The results were better than expected, with my analysis a statistically-nonsignificant trend toward the new drug, TAF, being more effective than the existing version of tenofovir.
- I expect that TAF will be a cornerstone of Gilead's efforts to sustain its dominance in the anti-HIV market for many years to come.
- The success of TAF represents a rarity in Big Pharma, namely a life-cycle management version of a major drug that is an important improvement over the existing drug.
Gilead Update: Good News Keeps On Coming; Much Higher Share Prices Appear Justified
- Gilead is becoming an investment icon, and the stock has soared the past few years.
- That puts a burden on the company to continue to provide upside surprises.
- This article attempts to make the case that this is happening, and that Gilead's shares are still attractive.
Challenging Consensus On PCSK9 Inhibitors: Focus On Regeneron And Amgen
- Amgen has filed for approval the first of a new class of proteins to lower LDL cholesterol.
- These PCSK9 inhibitors are expected to see Amgen's evolocumab and Regeneron/Sanofi's alirocumab reach market within a year.
- Enough information has been released to allow preliminary analysis of the commercial potential of these drugs and the entire class.
- One factor to consider is insider accumulation at Regeneron.
Why I Bought Into Monday's Move In Regeneron
- Regeneron has just announced a surprise data release on its main pipeline drug over the Labor Day weekend.
- I speculate that the news will be favorable.
- The stock is acting well and Regeneron has been doing well operationally.
- Valuation may explain why there is a decent short position on the stock, but the shorts may be getting uncomfortable now.
The Taper Of QE, And Other Reasons To Be Bullish On Bonds
- Consensus is that the Fed's ending of QE takes away buying power from bonds and should therefore be accompanied by rising interest rates.
- The history and practical aspects of QE do not support this view.
- Other factors make me tend toward the bond-bullish camp, though unfortunately high real interest rates are absent, so this is a speculative position rather than a fundamentally-based one.
An Analysis Of Amgen
- Amgen has a balanced mix of mature blockbusters, new products and a diverse pipeline.
- Despite more than doubling in the past few years, its absolute and relative valuation metrics could increase further.
- The turnaround in R&D and a new focus on marketing could allow it to grow profits rapidly in the next several years, giving the stock very large upside potential.
Gilead: Rising Short Interest Provides Yet Another Reason To Own The Stock
- Gilead Sciences is succeeding beyond the wildest dreams of its bulls as of only eight months ago.
- Its forward P/E is low relative to the market, thus incorporating caution about the sustainability of profits from its hepatitis C franchise.
- Yet the shorts have established a significant and growing position in the shares.
- I take that fact to be yet another attractive feature of GILD shares, especially in view of the latest newsflow on Gilead.
Supernus Finding Success, Looks Undervalued
- Supernus is a niche pharmaceutical company that brought two products to market last year.
- It announced an upside surprise this week.
- An intelligent business plan allows investors more than one way for the stock to appreciate substantially.
United Therapeutics: A Low P/E Biotech With Potential For Further Rapid Growth
- United Therapeutics recently reported strong Q2 results.
- Investors have worried about possible generic competition to its lead product, but the company argues it will likely lose little business should it come to pass.
- A strong pipeline, debt-free finances, and experienced management make this 10X P/E company's stock interesting, with the launch of Orenitram providing upside potential.
- The imminent freedom from paying a 10% royalty fee on its lead products adds to the upside potential in this stock.
- Several risks are present, including a probe of UTHR's marketing by the Office of the Inspector General.
The Case That Regeneron May Be Significantly Undervalued
- Regeneron announced an upside surprise for sales of its lead product Eylea this week.
- It has a powerful pipeline and important collaborations with Sanofi and Bayer HealthCare.
- The combination of high R&D spending and elevated pre-launch expenses for its late-stage cholesterol reducer alirocumab means that P/E is the wrong metric investors should look at.
The Case That Our Investment Dollars Will Be Treated Well In Dollar Tree Stock
- Dollar Tree has been a very successful company that has grown both by growth and acquisition.
- It has announced a transformational deal, a merger with/acquisition of Family Dollar.
- I view this deal as promising, especially in view of the two year consolidation in DLTR that has brought its P/E down from its 2012 peak.
A Re-Analysis Of Gilead After Q2 Results And The Early Idelalisib Approval
- Gilead Sciences announced Wednesday that it had another great quarter.
- Sovaldi sales met all but the very most optimistic projections.
- The rest of the company is also in gear.
- A large short position and strong business prospects make Gilead a stock that I find to be very attractive, especially in a high-P/E market.
Biogen Idec Beats And Raises: Reassessing Its Prospects
- Biogen Idec crushed sales and earnings estimates in Q2.
- The stock has surged but remains off its highs of this winter.
- With robust growth ahead and a leader in a secular growth field, Biogen Idec is, I believe, an attractive stock at current levels in the $330-$340 range.
Biotechs Have Their 'Irrational Exuberance' Moment: Time To Buy More?
- The Fed has now complained of overvaluation amongst smaller biotech stocks.
- On this news, large cap biotechs were slammed as well.
- This is reminiscent of Alan Greenspan's "irrational exuberance" comments in late 1996, a great buying opportunity.
Evaluating Biogen Idec After The Sell-Off
- Biogen Idec sold off last week on Federal Reserve concerns about valuation in smaller biotechs.
- This large company generates large amounts of cash, despite spending heavily on R&D.
- This article explains why I look at Biogen Idec as a core holding within the biotech universe.
Buying Big Blue On A Clean Quarter And Record Q2 EPS
- IBM had a clean quarter, with a mild EPS beat and a sales beat.
- It reiterated and possibly slightly upgraded guidance for the second half.
- Several parts of its business may have bottomed, and the partnership with Apple may suggest new creative thinking at IBM.
- The shares now look attractive to me, though a turnaround has not happened yet.
Taiwan Semiconductor Still Dominates; Buying The Sell-Off
- Taiwan Semiconductor sold off sharply after reporting a seemingly good quarter with good guidance for the rest of 2014.
- Some current news regarding competition may have led to profit-taking following its strong stock performance the past several months.
- This article reviews where I see TSM now and reiterates the bullish view of the stock I first propounded three months ago.
It May Be Time For Yahoo's Board To Shop The Company
- Yahoo! is a famous name that is always trying to turn around.
- It has reported a disappointing Q2 and forecast a weak Q3.
- My take is that the company may be worth more dead than alive, and the board should solicit bids.
The Investment Case For Everest Re, A Low-Beta Reinsurer
- Everest Re has been a strong performer in its 19 years as a public entity.
- The stock has strong value characteristics.
- Analysts and successful value funds both give RE two thumbs up, yet few individual investors own this name.
Verizon Provides A Positive Pre-Announcement; Why I Think The Stock Could Surprise To The Upside
- Verizon Communications has commented positively about its Q2 results.
- It sounds as though operations were strong in several areas.
- The ongoing surprise in longer-term interest rates may make Verizon stock appreciate nicely.
A Pre-Earnings Update On Gilead
- Gilead Sciences is a, or perhaps the, leading antiviral company with several other areas of focus now.
- Quarterly earnings are pending soon, but they may not reflect or predict the longer-term value of Gilead shares.
- Recent developments continue to keep me bullish on this company's future, some of which are discussed herein.
Making The Case For Teva
- Teva Pharmaceuticals has been in stagnation mode for several years.
- Its lead profit center, Copaxone, is under imminent threat from generics.
- Yet, it has turnaround characteristics, and Copaxone may turn out better than feared.
- Overall, I rate TEVA as a reasonable "buy" here to gain exposure to secular growth trends at a low valuation, with the possibility of a takeover if operations go poorly.
Portola: A Small Biotech Stock That Could Double - And Then Double Again
- Portola Pharmaceuticals is an 11-year old biotech-biopharma company operating in the heme-onc field.
- Its specific area of focus involves Factor Xa inhibition.
- Its most exciting product is andexanet, a universal antidote to bleeding caused by inhibiting Factor Xa.
- While there are numerous and serious risks, the upside from andexanet appears reasonably well-defined to me.
Why This Bear On IBM Is Moving Toward A Bullish Posture
- IBM stock has become controversial, with the bears getting aggressive and going against lots of fervent supporters of the shares.
- IBM shares have massively underperformed the market over the past two years, and their time may be coming.
- Yet, the fundamentals suggest the stock could well be overvalued and that IBM could lead a fresh bear market to the downside, if the current bull market gives way.
- Because of IBM's worsening underperformance plus fundamental factors, I have moderated my bearishness on IBM, and I'm now looking and hoping for a reason to go long this name.
Vertex Soars On Phase III Trial Results: Assessing The Upside Potential From Here
- Vertex Pharmaceuticals announced positive results from Phase 3 trials of a combination regimen for cystic fibrosis.
- The stock has soared, and the company trades at a very high multiple of current sales.
- Vertex has had disappointing outcomes with prior drug products it developed, but it may be poised for significant success now.
Analyzing The Hepatitis C Market Size: Why It May Have Bullish Implications For Gilead
- Hepatitis C has suddenly changed from a chronic illness to a curable one.
- Given that it is much more prevalent than HIV, the market opportunity to provide the cures is large.
- This article discusses some of the many variables that affect investing decisions in approaching this market, with emphasis on the market leader, Gilead Sciences.
Same Stuff, Different Quarter: Oracle Is Attractive Again After An Earnings-Related Sell-Off
- Oracle has missed sales and EPS expectations.
- Yet, the stock is a free cash flow king, and is fighting to gain ascendancy in high-growth areas.
- Founder and CEO Larry Ellison rarely sells, and I want to invest alongside him.