J.P. Morgan healthcare analyst Cory Kasimov weighed in today with his thoughts on Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD), after the company reached a deal to buy a liver-disease treatment program from privately held biotechnology company Phenex Pharmaceuticals. The analyst rates the stock an Overweight with a $117 price target.

Kasimov noted, “We are encouraged by this acquisition for GILD. First and foremost, it clearly fits into a key area of focus for the company (liver diseases); moreover, it adds clinical assets (PX-102, PX-104) to the pipeline in addition to discovery/development capabilities for other novel, small molecule FXR agonists.”

The analyst added, “We think this is likely just the beginning for GILD on a pipeline investment front, as we expect the company will continue to put its growing cash balance to use.”

According to TipRanks.com, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, analyst Cory Kasimov has a total average return of 16.6% and a 50.0% success rate. Kasimov has a -1.1% average return when recommending GILD, and is ranked #472 out of 3446 analysts.

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