JAZZ Pharmaceuticals (JAZZ), Ariad (ARIA) and AVI Biopharma (AVII) continued today to provide the bio-pharma, pharmaceutical and drug industries with momentum. The number of companies in this industry that have been reporting positive Phase II and Phase III clinical trials has been outstanding this month. The FDA must be earning its money.
Look at Jazz Pharmaceuticals (JAZZ) http://www.jazzpharmaceuticals.com/ now trading on the Nasdaq in the $6.83 range with a new market cap of $200 million. JAZZ picked up 9.84% ($0.62) in early trading this morning. We have covered this stock in the past and believe JAZZ has one of the most aggressive approaches to its marketing its drugs. With a 3-Month average daily trading volume of 2,105,610 shares, JAZZ easily doubled that number this morning topping 5,394,739 shares by 11 a.m. EST.
JAZZ develops and commercializes products for neurology and psychiatry primarily in the U.S. JAZZ marketed products includes Xyrem for the treatment of excessive daytime sleepiness and cataplexy in patients with narcolepsy; and Luvox CR for obsessive compulsive disorder and social anxiety disorder.
At $6.83, JAZZ is off its 52-week high of $8.85 and far above its 52-week low of $0.52. At $6.83, JAZZ is above both its 50-day and 200-day moving averages. JAZZ has trailing twelve month revenues of $74 million. I would still like to see more shares in the public float.
Also boosting the Pharmaceutical Sector today is Ariad Pharmaceuticals (ARIA) http://www.ariad.com/ which picked up 29.80% ($0.73) in early trading. ARIA is now selling for $3.18 a share. ARIA has a 3-Month average daily trading volume of 576,353 shares and shot past 16 times that volume early in today's session topping 8,363,931 shares traded.
ARIA released reported today that a mid-stage study of its experimental treatment for breast cancer was proving very successful. Preliminary findings from two ongoing Phase II clinical trials evaluating oral ridaforolimus in combination with trastuzumab in patients with metastatic breast cancer who have become resistant to trastuzumab; would result in objective evidence of tumor shrinkage. Great News.
ARIA focuses on small-molecule drugs for the treatment of cancer in the U.S. and Europe. The ARIA Pipeline includes: Phase III clinical trials of oral deforolimus in patients with metastatic soft-tissue and bone sarcomas; Phase II clinical trials in patients with endometrial, breast, and prostate cancers; and Phase I studies of deforolimus in combination with other agents, as well as Phase I clinical trials of AP24534 in patients with refractory CML, AML, and other hematological malignancies. Impressive.
At $3.18 a share, ARIA is below its 52-week high of $3.55 set on 08-15-08 and is far ahead of its 52-week low of $0.72 set on 12-31-08. At $3.18, ARIA is above both its 50-day and 200-day moving averages. ARIA has some revenues (which is also unusual for pharma development companies). ARIA has trailing twelve month revenues of $7.5 million and its shares out versus float ratio is near-parity.
The third Pharmaceutical company energizing the sector today is AVI Biopharma (AVII) http://www.antivirals.com/ which picked up $0.38 (18.10%) in early trading to lift its share price to $2.48 on the Nasdaq with a new market cap of $212 million. AVII had tripled its 3-Month average daily trading volume of 1,150,010 by 11 a.m. EST.
AVII, a developer of RNA-based drugs, and Action Duchenne, a leading UK charity dedicated to increasing awareness and raising funds to find a cure for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy have announced a collaboration to support the acceleration of research and development for AVII drugs to treat the disease. Go get 'em AVII.
AVII develops therapeutic products based on antisense and cancer immunotherapy technology. The company's products under various development stages are: AVI-4658, a Phase I human clinical trial product to restore, prevent, or slow deterioration of muscle function; AVI-5038, a preclinical stage product to skip exon 50 and restore a range of associated mutations; AVI-5126, a Phase II clinical trial product for the treatment of cardiovascular restenosis; and AVI-6002 and AVI-6003, which are in Phase I clinical trials to treat diseases caused by Dengue, Ebola, Marburg, and Junín viruses.
At $2.48, AVII will set a 52-week high today. Its 52-week low is $0.45 set on 11-21-08. At $2.48, AVII is above both its 50-day and 200-day moving averages. Another pharma with revenues, AVII has $19 million in trailing twelve month revenues. Its shares out versus flat ratio is near-parity.
Trying to curb the bears today and getting a nice jump in another sector this morning is Veeco Instruments (VECO) http://www.veeco.com/ which gained 27.13% ($3.98) in early trading today. VECO is trading in the $19 range on the Nasdaq. VECO has a 3-Month average daily trading volume of 382,550 shares and had topped 1,016,131 shares traded at the time of this writing.
VECO reported Q2 numbers late yesterday, and though they weren't very good; they beat the consensus of analysts. VECO revenues fell 37%.
Today's rally is based on two good things: VECO management expects the third quarter to see only a two cent loss while analysts were expecting a third-quarter loss of 11 cents. The second piece of good news for VECO came today in the form of an upgrade from CitiGroup: Hold to Buy.
VECO sells solutions for customers in the high brightness light emitting diode (HB-LED), solar, data storage, semiconductor, scientific research, and industrial markets worldwide. The company operates in three segments: LED & Solar Process Equipment, Data Storage Process Equipment, and Metrology.
At $19, VECO will set a 52-week high today. Its 52-week low is $3.22 set on 03-02-09. At $19, VECO is ahead of both its 50-day and 200-day moving averages. VECO has trailing twelve month revenues of $403 million and its shares out versus float ratio is at parity.
Another gainer in a now-jittery market today is LaserCard (LCRD) http://www.lasercard.com/ which gained 19.81% ($1.01) in early trading on news of its Q1 numbers released late yesterday. LCRD is currently trading on the Nasdaq in the $6 range with a new market cap of $74 million. LCRD topped its 3-Month average trading volume by ten times in early trading soaring past 236,917 shares traded.
LCRD reported first quarter net income of $1.9 million, or 16 cents a share, compared to a loss in the same quarter last year of $1.3 million, or 11 cents a share. Very impressive coming out of a recession.
LCRD provides secure ID solutions to government and commercial clients worldwide. It develops, manufactures, and integrates LaserCard optical memory cards, optical card drives, peripherals and specialty cards, and printers. The company's products are used in various applications, including identification cards for citizens, non-citizen permanent residents, foreign workers, and border crossings, as well as for vehicle registration.
At $6, LCRD will set a 52-week high today. Its 52-week low is $2.05 set on 03-09-09. At $6, LCRD is above both its 50-day and 200-day moving averages. LCRD has trailing twelve month revenues of $50 million and its shares out versus float ratio is near-parity.