Excerpt from our One Page Annotated Wall Street Journal Summary (receive it by email every morning by signing up here):
Merck Wins California Vioxx Case, Widening Edge on Trial Score Card
Summary: A 12 person jury in California took all of four and a half hours to Clear Merck of responsibility for the heart attack of a 71 year old man who took Vioxx for about two years. It turns out the plaintiff already had artery blockage when he started taking the medication. According to Merck's lawyer, "From the beginning of time, arteries that clogged have caused heart attacks...". Merck faces 14,200 Vioxx lawsuits, with California accounting for almost 500 of them.
Comment on related stocks/ETFs: This is the latest in the string of good news on the legal front for Vioxx. As Rick Conrad wrote, Merck has already won 4 of the 7 cases involving Vioxx. Merck's stock closed at $41.03 yesterday, up over 25% from the beginning of the year.