High Profile Biotechnology Companies with ASCO Presence
Investors and traders waited toward the end of the ASCO Annual Meeting week to buy their favorite stocks. The biotech sector overall was boosted after the close of the meeting after a brief sell-off on June 2 and 3. Most biopharmaceutical stocks peaked in late February so ASCO was a chance to make up lost ground with good clinical news. Although breakthroughs in targeted cancer therapy, immuno-oncology and personalized medicine have been ongoing for a few years there was little scientific news at ASCO that propelled individual stocks. On the other hand there were two big losers Clovis Oncology (NASDAQ:CLVS) and Puma Biotechnology (NYSE:PBYI) both "high flyers" in Q1. Review our previous ASCO posts and our Rayno Biopharmaceutical Summary from May 2. Notable movers:
- Agios Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ:AGIO) is a clinical stage Company focused in cancer metabolism for example by inhibiting isocitrate dehydrogenase (IDH). The Company has four products in the clinic including two for hematologic malignancies and will present on a AG 221 Phase 1 on June 16 at the European Hematology Association. The Company has a collaboration with Celgene (NASDAQ:CELG). No presentations were made at ASCO.
- Seattle Genetics (NASDAQ:SGEN) has been on our focus list since 2009 at a price of $9.50 and presented on their antibody-drug conjugate clinical programs for multiple cancers with their collaborators. The stock bottomed the week before ASCO .
- Incyte Corporation (INCY presented pivotal Phase 3 data on the JAK1/JAK2 inhibitor ruxolitinib for polycythemia with a filing expected this month. The Jakafi drug is approved for myelofibrosis and Q1 revenues were $69.7M. Six additional JAK inhibitor drugs for cancers are in their pipeline.
- Celldex (NASDAQ:CLDX) presented Phase 1 data on varlilumab (CDX-1127) for immunotherapy through T-cell activation for treating a variety of cancers. The stock perked up on 6/5 near the bottom of the range related to option activity.
- Bristol- Myers (BMY $47.21) shares sank on mixed opinions for their immune stimulating drug nivolumab which block cancer cell receptors in combination with Yervoy. The issue from the clinical data was response from patients who test negative for the PD-L1 biomarker. Potential buy on weakness but there are competitive programs from AZN and MRK.
- All of our large cap biopharmaceutical picks were up over the past 5 trading days.
- It was very difficult to trade individual stocks anticipating any ASCO scientific news but the overall sector did outperform. All Rayno Life Science stock picks (see below in bold) were up over 5 days.
- Some individual stocks moved during ASCO with no clinical news. AGIO,ICPT.
- Buying a biotech ETF gave you a play during ASCO. The more volatile, smaller cap ETF XBI gave the best return (up 5%) this week.
- The oft repeated advice to be cautious about Phase 2 clinical data proved itself with Clovis Oncology and Puma Biotech, both clinical stage companies with no product revenues.
Top 5 Winners Over 5 Trading Days
Agios (AGIO $40.85) up 20.5% YTD up 70.6%
Seattle Genetics (SGEN $37.59) up 13.4% YTD down 5.8%
Celldex (CLDX $15.15) up 13.9% YTD down 37%
Incyte (INCY $52.98) up 12.5% YTD up 4.6%
Medivation (MDVN $75.86) up 10% YTD up 18.9%
Top 3 Losers Over 5 Trading Days
Clovis Oncology (CLVS $40.77) down 28.5% YTD down 32%
Puma Bio (PBYI $55.80) down 25.8% YTD down 46%
Bristol Myers (BMY $47.21) down 3.24% YTD down 11%
Selected Biotech Stocks With Potential "ASCO Effect"
Paste this list in your portfolio tracker.
|Stock||Company||Price||30 day||Price||Price||5 Days||YTD|
|5/30/14||Perf %||6/2/14||Perf %||4-Jun||5-Jun||%|
|FBT||First Trust Bio||4.6||14.3|
|In bold||Rayno Focus||Stocks|
Disclosure: I am long GILD.
Additional disclosure: Long Fidelity Select Biotech Fund (MUTF:FBIOX) and short mid-cal biotechs as a hedge on a daily basis.