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The Five Best Biotech Analyst Calls Of 2015

The Five Best Biotech Analyst Calls Of 2015
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As biotech stocks are highly volatile, analysts must make the correct rating at the right time to make a profit. Below are TipRanks' Top 5 Biotech Ratings of 2015 with each rating measured over a three-month horizon and no benchmark.

1. The most profitable rating in the biotech sector in 2015 was made by Mizuho analyst Irina Rivkind Koffler when she recommended to Buy Eagle Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: EGRX) on January 22, 2015. In the three months following the rating, the company released several positive reports, such as the FDA’s decision in February to grant the company seven years of market exclusivity to Ryanodex, the company’s orphan drug for malignant hyperthermia. Later in early April, Eagle Pharma announced it had received a patent until 2033 for the use of low-sodium bendamustine in patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia. At the time of Rivkind Koffler’s January rating, EGRX was trading at $16.40. Three months later, shares had climbed to over $60, marking an overwhelming 269% increase in three months.

Rivkind Koffler has a 79% success rate recommending Ealge Pharmaceuticals with a +61.8% average return for the stock when measured over a three-month horizon. She has a 61% overall success rate recommending stocks with a +14% average success rate when measured over a three-month horizon.


2. The second most profitable biotech rating of 2015 goes to Piper Jaffray analyst Joshua Schimmer. On April 23, Schimmer recommended buying shares of Inotek Pharmaceuticals Corp (NASDAQ: ITEK). The analyst made the rating to voice his confidence in Inotek after a competing company released disappointing data for a drug that would compete with ITEK’s trabodenoson, a pipeline treatment for glaucoma. Later in July, shares of ITEK skyrocketed when the company announced plans for the first pivotal trial for trabodenoson. The analyst commented, “While glaucoma trials are fraught with noise and confounded by a general lack of placebo controlled trials, we believe this pivotal trial is well designed and best positions trabo for success.” Investors who listened to Schimmer’s January recommendation would have made a 223% return on the investment in three months as shares jumped from $4.75 to over $15.


Schimmer has a 43% success rate recommending Inotek with an +18.6% average return per rating when measured over a three-month horizon.

3. The third most profitable biotech rating of 2015 was made by Corey Davis of Cannacord Genuity. On May 15, 2015, the analyst reiterated a Buy rating on Aquinox Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: AQXP) with a price target of $16 after the company posted its Q1 earnings. On July 9, shares plummeted due to disappointing results from AQX-1125, the company’s lead candidate developed to treat chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The study indicated no difference in patients taking the drug compared to the placebo. However, on August 9 the company reported positive data from the same drug in a separate study, as well as anticipating results from an eczema study set to release earlier than expected; events which sent the stock soaring. At the time of Davis’s rating, the stock was trading at $7.34. Three months later, the stock surged to $22.13, marking a 201.4% profit.

Davis has a 20% success rate recommending Aquinox with a 21.8% average return per rating when measured over a three-month horizon. He has a 53% overall success rate with a +4.4% average return recommending stocks when measured over a three-month period.


4. Ram Selvaraju of Rodman and Resnshow made the fourth most profitable biotech rating of 2015. On February 27, 2015 the analyst initiated a Buy rating on Asterias Biotherapeutics Inc (NYSEMKT:AST) with a price target of $9 following the completion of the company’s public offering and private placement of common stock, a transaction facilitated by MLV & Co, his previous firm. Selvaraju’s rating preceded the company’s Q4 earnings results as he expressed positive sentiment about the company’s endeavors in his rating. He stated, “In our view, the firm is an underrated participant in the rapidly burgeoning regenerative medicine sector.” He continued to state the company’s recent initiatives, such as “an active clinical program in the domain of spinal cord injury, several additional preclinical programs targeting cancer, and a highly differentiated proprietary technology platform harnessing the therapeutic properties of human embryonic stem (hES) cells.” At the time of Selvaraju’s rating, shares of Asterias were trading at $3.98. Three months later, the stock climbed to $11.45. If you had bought shares of AST when Salvaraju suggested, you would have made a 187.6% profit.


Selvaraju has a 100% success rate recommending Asterias with a 122.9% average return per AST rating when measured over a three-month horizon.

5. David Steinberg of Jefferies made the fifth most profitable rating in the biotech sector when he recommended buying shares of Anacor Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: ANAC) on May 4th when he raised his estimates on AN2728, or Crisaborole, for atopic dermatitis. Steinberg explained he was increasing his pricing assumptions for the drug by 29% “after reviewing category trends.” In mid-July, the stock surged when Anacor released positive top-line results. The company expects to submit a New Drug Application to the FDA in the first half of 2016. If you had followed Steinberg’s recommendation to Buy shares of ANAC in May and sold them three months later, you would have made a 170% return on the investment.

David Steinberg has an 86% success rate recommending Anacor Pharma with a +53.5% average return per rating when measured over a three-month horizon. Overall, he has a 60% success rate recommending stocks and a +11.5% average return per rating when measured over a three-month time period.


Latest Ratings for EGRX

Jun 2018Cantor FitzgeraldInitiates Coverage OnOverweight
Jun 2018MizuhoUpgradesUnderperformNeutral
Jan 2017MizuhoDowngradesNeutralUnderperform

View More Analyst Ratings for EGRX
View the Latest Analyst Ratings

The preceding article is from one of our external contributors. It does not represent the opinion of Benzinga and has not been edited.

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