Sept 18- Rite Aid Corp cut its full-year profit forecast for the second time in about three months due to lower margins in its pharmacy business, sending its shares down more than 16 percent.» Read More
The gloves are off. Overnight, Pfizer came out with a new study on the world's top-selling drug, Lipitor, for cholesterol. The company says if you switch from its drug to generic Zocor you've got a 30% greater chance of dying from a heart attack, stroke or some other "major cardiovascular" event.
As I was gearing up to come back to work from my extended holiday weekend I searched some of my mainstay internet sources for information and tips yesterday including cafepharma.com. It's filled with pharmaceutical and biotech company message boards with postings mostly from sales reps complaining, providing job applicants with salary and benefits details, occasionally revealing the latest internal memo, and frankly, spreading rumors and gossip.
I'll be out of the office for an extra-long holiday weekend, so I'm emptying out the blog inbox before I go. Nick Stavriotis sent an email to clarify his previous incomplete statement regarding the FDA's "overrule" of the Dendreon Provenge advisory committee recommendation: "...my words should have said 'refusal to follow an overwhelming...
Xoma Ltd., the subject of a prominent, front page New York Times Sunday Business section article earlier this year headlined, "It's Alive! One of Biotech's Zombies", is leaving the Zombies behind. The shares of the small cap are up more than 20% on heavy volume. The Times piece described how the 26-year-old company had yet to turn a profit (the overwhelming majority of biotechs don't make money),
We've known that Merck has been testing its cervical cancer vaccine Gardasil on young men (16-23 years old). The company says major data on those clinical trials are expected next year and could help Merck win FDA approval of the shots for males as well as females. The first-of-its-kind product has already sparked a sociopolitical controversy with its recommended use for young women. Imagine the brouhaha if or when Merck starts selling it for young men.
Shares of Neurochem today are trading at a new low after the Canadian biotech announced its developmental drug for Alzheimer's didn't work well enough. It is the latest evidence that cracking the code of this complex disease is extremely challenging. We recently did a story on the drug called Alzhemed, the potential AD-drug market and other companies working on treatments/cures at a dementia conference in Washington, DC.
Bayer and Onyx Pharmaceuticals said they were stopping a late clinical liver cancer trial with Nexavar in the Asia-Pacific region so patients can get the drug sooner after encouraging results.
I received a lot of comment on this week's post about the editorial in USA Today about the Food and Drug Administration improving patient access to potentially lifesaving or life-extending experimental drugs and the counterpoint op-ed by FDA commissioner Dr. Andrew von Eschenbach. Lori Gluth writes: "Von E’s commentary appeared to me to be a lame CYA."
In case you hadn't heard September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month. It's the #2 cancer killer of American men behind lung cancer. The American Cancer Society estimates nearly 220,000 men will be diagnosed with the disease this year. And as the emails coming into our inboxes indicate, it's going to be a busy month for those who are trying to get more money, research and drugs to help fight it.
Late last year, in his first and last interview with CNBC following the blowup of the cholesterol drug torcetrapib, I asked new Pfizer CEO, Jeff Kindler, how he could go from "selling chicken" at Boston Market (he used to run the chain for McDonald's) to "selling drugs". Based on the subsequent vibe I got, it was clear that some of the Pfizer media relations people at the time didn't like the question.
Pfizer on Wednesday said it named Frank A. D'Amelio, a senior executive of Alcatel-Lucent, as chief financial officer of the drugmaker.
In an editorial today, USA Today calls on the Food and Drug Administration to let dying patients get quicker, easier access to promising, potentially lifesaving or life-extending, developmental drugs. The paper argues that thousands of people in "dire circumstances" deserve "the chance to take a last-ditch gamble".
Novo Nordisk, the world's biggest diabetes drug company, is very lightly traded on the New York Stock Exchange, but check out the move in the stock today. Coincidentally, on the day that The New York Times runs a front-page story (with two jump pages) on how controlling diabetes is about lowering blood sugar and cholesterol levels, the Danish drugmaker is out with major data on its glucose fighting drug Liraglutide.
This has been a lousy summer for investors in Pfizer. The stock traded at nearly 28 bucks in June and today it's fighting its way back up over the $24 mark. Goldman Sachs big pharma analyst James Kelly in a research note to clients is reiterating his buy rating on the shares, but is lowering his 12-month price target from $30 to $29.
On Amgen's conference call the other day regarding the biotech company's cutbacks, officials repeatedly stated that they think the federal government's new, restrictive guidelines for use and payment of Amgen's bread-and-butter anemia drugs will hurt patients and specifically, result in the need for more risky, old-fashioned blood transfusions to treat the condition.
At CNBC we use -- among others -- a couple of primary business news wire services -- NewsEdge, part of Thomson, and Relegence, part of AOL.
Thirty years ago, I was in Las Vegas. My stepmother took me to see Ann-Margret at The Hilton and I remember our waitress telling us that Elvis was the only one who could consistently pack the room. It was strange that he passed away the next day. On this, the 30th anniversary of the King's death from overdosing on prescription drugs, the stocks of the companies that make prescription drugs are having a very dark day.
Usually when a company announces cost cuts that will help improve cash flow and buoy profits, investors cheer and buy the stock. After the bell yesterday, Amgen revealed it's going to get rid of as many as 2,600 employees, cut its capital expenditures this year and next by nearly $2 billion and close or downsize plants. The measures are being taken to help absorb the blow from plummeting sales of Amgen's anemia drug, Aranesp, which is facing intense safety and reimbursement issues. This morning the stock is trading at a new multi-year low.
Biotechnology firm Amgen said after U.S. markets closed Wednesday that it will slash its employee base by between 12 and 14% in hopes of reducing its 2008 cost forecasts by $1 billion to $1.3 billion on a pre-tax basis.
Don't listen to the bears - There is a cohort of stocks that is working during this downturn. Here are Cramer's picks.Investing can be confusing. Luckily, Cramer has mapped out some road rules for all you Home Gamers trying to navigate the jungle that is Wall Street. Think of it as "Mad Money 101" –- some fundamental advice to keep in mind as you play the market. Whether you're a first time investor or a seasoned financier, it's always good to remember the basics.