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  • Vertex Pharma: Well Positioned To Set New Highs [View article]
    qdelfan, thanks very much for providing all that info, and your highly informed investment thesis for VRTX. I concur. Despite worries over Europe/Greece, I added to my VRTX Friday afternoon after the approval.

    My guess is that several large/mega-cap pharma co's are now going to be able to look seriously at acquiring VRTX - i.e., it could be the PCYC story again. But if not, VRTX is fine as a standalone entity.
    Jul 3, 2015. 09:05 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Multiple Observations On Celgene's Latest Licensing Deals, And Its Valuation [View article]
    Sunny, thanks for reading and commenting. The relative data I presented are similar if you use forward earnings. The problem with forward earnings are that they are uncertain. In the case of Celgene, it is growing at a reasonable pace, but not so fast anymore that trailing earnings are misleading.
    Jul 2, 2015. 08:44 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Vertex Pharma: Well Positioned To Set New Highs [View article]
    Same to you, retired.

    On the conf call, VRTX mgmt said that royalty payments to CFF should be deducted from gross sales. So I don't know if the Yahoo article is correct. Will check on it and provide an update.
    Jul 2, 2015. 03:44 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Vertex Pharma: Well Positioned To Set New Highs [View article]
    FDA has now approved Orkambi.

    Plus I appear to have erred in my projections re royalties to the CFF. While I see no press release on the VRTX website, Yahoo Finance is saying that VRTX bought the royalty rights last November for $3 B. Assuming that's correct (I'll check the VRTX SEC filings), then the upside for VRTX is that much greater than I thought.

    All-time highs for VRTX soon, perhaps very soon? Given Street projections for $5 EPS in 2016, I think that VRTX can easily trade at 30X those projected EPS.
    Jul 2, 2015. 01:56 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • FDA clears Vertex's Orkambi; shares up 4% [View news story]
    ATH's definitely do-able now that approval is granted. July typically a strong month starting now... let's see if Europe cooperates. Plus IMHO this means that takeover talk can ramp up for real now.
    Jul 2, 2015. 01:46 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • FDA clears Vertex's Orkambi; shares up 4% [View news story]
    Jul 2, 2015. 12:20 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gilead submits NDA for single tablet HIV med [View news story]
    FDA has 6 months to approve this after they accept this NDA filing. That may take a month, perhaps less. So maybe this will be a Jan 2016 approval. Thus, Gilead will be launching three new TAF-based HIV combo products close to each other. HIV prescribers will see a full-court press as these approvals appear. HIV remains an under-treated disease in the US and Western Europe.
    Jul 1, 2015. 09:30 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Pac Crest hikes iPhone/cuts Watch estimates; leaked 6S photos show faster QCOM modem [View news story]
    This is the QOTD and an amazing statistic if (more or less) true:

    "We believe the majority of people earning $15,000 a year or more in the world will own an iPhone exiting F2015."
    Jul 1, 2015. 02:41 PM | 10 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Vertex Pharma: Well Positioned To Set New Highs [View article]
    stk, the way I think that giant companies that could afford to acquire Vertex do things is that they wait for the approval and then study the label (prescribing information). And maybe they wait for the product to be launched and see how the real world initial experience is, what their consultants think, etc. Then they think about acquisition. Look at PCYC. These companies don't really care about buying the acquisition as cheaply as possible. They just don't want to blunder and buy a loser. That ruins careers, and it's all about career risk at the mega-cap multinationals.
    Jun 29, 2015. 11:22 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Vertex Pharma: Well Positioned To Set New Highs [View article]
    stk, takeover valuations are high as you know given such low borrowing costs. Perhaps a 30% and even a 50% premium to current price.

    If not, Street EPS estimates for next year have been rising and are near $5 per share. Given Orkambi is so young a product (assuming approval in the US and EU), that means that VRTX is trading at 25-26 consensus earnings for 2016, and I think that's attractive given that Kalydeco is still growing, Orkambi's growth year in the EU will really be 2017 (then there's the rest of the world), and VX-661 at least has a shot at working for one of the other (heterozygous) types of CF.

    Without the takeover possibility, I like but don't love VRTX. I normally don't play takeovers, but I think it elevates VRTX to another, higher investment level of attractiveness.

    Thanks for reading and posing your question. Do you have any thoughts of your own on a potential takeover price?
    Jun 28, 2015. 10:41 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Vertex Pharma: Well Positioned To Set New Highs [View article]
    john, you're welcome. I agree with your point that Vertex gets a bad rap. I think that increases the odds for a takeover.

    As far as entertainers such as sports figures, as they say in Brooklyn - go know.
    Jun 28, 2015. 08:47 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Biotech Will Break This Bull [View article]

    If you say maybe it's 1997 - therefore the IBB and XBI are going to quadruple from here with only one brief bear market (fall 1998), then you are saying we should buy with both hands. If you say well, maybe it's Y2K or will be sooner than if it's really 1997, and it's (near) the top, then you are saying we should sell all highly appreciated stocks and even short them.

    Which is it?

    Do you have a specific point of view?

    I don't see any clear investment thesis here absent clarification on your part. Furthermore, the hepatitis C point you made is really not accurate. While in the final sentence of your hep C paragraph it is not clear what the meaning of "it" is, if it refers to "the health care system" you denote in the first sentence of the paragraph, then actually the system has chosen Gilead's cure far more than the AbbVie cure. I've been in and around "the health care system" as an American for 40 years. Assuming some reasonable comparability in price, I have always seen the superior treatment dominate.

    The American people have been consistent. Outside of national security, they (we)want more and better health care. This is one tree that does keep on growing, no matter how many "Poe's ravens" try to scare us with "Nevermore."

    Can we "afford it?" Yes. Barring world war, it is clearly - no doubt about it - a matter of resource allocation, mostly personnel, as the raw materials for pharmaceutical production are usually cheap and plentiful.

    Sorry, I don't think this effort was up to your usual high standards.

    Will biotechs enter bear markets? Well, do bears **** in the woods?

    The better question IMHO is: where is the secular growth in the US economy? Is it building more roads and houses? Is it growing more food? No, and no, for the foreseeable future given an aging population. Is IT maturing as a growth field? Yes.

    So that leaves us with Alexander Pope: the proper study of man is man.

    The key point you grant the biotech bulls is that biotech is the new tech. As with tech two (or perhaps much more than two) decades ago, the best is yet to come.
    Jun 27, 2015. 11:32 AM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Isis Pharmaceuticals: Another Regeneron (Or Even Better) In The Making? [View article]
    Picolomini, thanks! I do love fine art, ranging from classical to modern to pop.
    Jun 27, 2015. 10:35 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Vertex Pharma: Well Positioned To Set New Highs [View article]
    sliman, I'm familiar with Cambrex's (CBM) general business, and I wouldn't buy it here. Where's the moat? Congrats to the CBM longs who bought it cheaply.
    Jun 26, 2015. 08:25 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Vertex Pharma: Well Positioned To Set New Highs [View article]

    I am holding off on NVLS. I did take a look at it but think it's too early-stage to be able to value. There are other stocks at or below $1 B market cap that I believe have better risk-reward ratios, at least so far as I can discern.
    Jun 26, 2015. 06:38 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment