Analysts are weighing in on pharmaceutical giants Gilead Sciences, Inc. (NASDA:GILD), Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:REGN), and Abbott Laboratories (NYSE:ABT) with mixed ratings. The analysts reflect on Gilead’s recent FDA approval, Regeneron’s Sarilumab prospects, and Abbott’s risk/reward.
Gilead Sciences, Inc.
Gilead announced yesterday evening that the FDA has approved Harvoni (ledipasvir/sofosbuvir) for expanded use in patients with genotype 4, 5, and 6 chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and in patients co-infected with HIV. In addition, Harvoni plus ribavirin (RBV) for 12 weeks was approved as an alternate therapy to 24 weeks of Harvoni for treatment-experienced, genotype 1 patients with cirrhosis.
Maxim analyst Jason Kolber commented, “Gilead continues to be the leader in our biotechnology universe. It has a consistent base (HIV), with HCV driving growth. The company continues to develop its “other” franchises as HCV outshines. We see upside as Japan starts to build. Harvoni now stands to eliminate genotype testing.”
Kolbert rates Gilead Sciences a Buy, with a price target of $137, which represents a potential upside of 34% from where the stock is currently trading.
According to TipRanks.com, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, analyst Jason Kolbert has a total average return of -12.9% and a 28% success rate. Kolbert has a 15.7% average return when recommending GILD, and is ranked #3834 out of 3842 analysts.
Out of the 11 analysts polled by TipRanks in the last 3 months, 9 rate Gilead Sciences stock a Buy, while 2 rate the stock a Hold. With a return potential of 27.96%, the stock’s consensus target price stands at $131.25.
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc
In a research report issued yesterday, Roth Capital analyst Joseph Pantginis reiterated a Neutral rating on shares of Regeneron, with a price target of $543. In the report, Pantginis highlighted his takeaways from the recent sarilumab thematic IR call following data presented at ACR as well as comments on the updated post-hoc analyses of Praluent ODDYSEY data presented at AHA.
Pantginis wrote, “The majority of patients at this point will receive an anti-TNF agent and if these patients don’t achieve their target within six months (clinical remission or low disease activity), then the biologic treatment is changed to another type of biologic. Given the most patients first receive anti-TNF treatment as their first biologic treatment, we believe that this is where sarilumab could establish its footprint most efficiently, supported by strong clinical data. Indeed, REGN’s Phase III program is aimed at 1st and 2nd line use with MTX/DMARD in antiTNF inadequate responders. We note that while sarilumab showed strong clinical responses, we’re not convinced it will be enough to differentiate it from tocilizumab. To support this we note that data from TARGET was comparable to tocilizumab data in the Phase III BREVACTA study.”
According to TipRanks.com, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, analyst Joseph Pantginis has a total average return of -4.4% and a 34% success rate. Pantginis has a 34.4% average return when recommending REGN, and is ranked #3742 out of 3842 analysts.
Out of the 18 analysts polled by TipRanks, 10 rate Regeneron Pharmaceuticals stock a Buy, while 8 rate the stock a Hold. With a return potential of 7.4%, the stock’s consensus target price stands at $589.67.
In a research report issued today, Goldman Sachs analyst David Roman downgraded shares of Abbott from a Buy to a Neutral rating, with a price target of $48, which represents a potential upside of 9% from where the stock is currently trading.
Roman explained, “To be clear, this is not a negative call on Abbott’s business or emerging markets (EM) but rather a shift in our industry view to focus on stocks with more bottoms-up growth drivers (new product cycles) rather than making a top-down call (i.e. strength in EM healthcare spending). In addition, with ABT shares posting solid gains post 3Q results, the upside relative to our valuation appears more limited vs. other stocks in our coverage.”
“We think Abbott’s performance will be increasingly tied to capital deployment activity as the company continues to reshape its business mix and growth profile. We believe management has a solid track record of deal execution, and we look for strategic activity as a potential catalyst to become more constructive on the stock,” the analyst concluded.
According to TipRanks.com, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, analyst David Roman has a total average return of 1.5% and a 50.0% success rate. Roman has a 16.0% average return when recommending ABT, and is ranked #1772 out of 3842 analysts.