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Jefferies Calls Bluebird Bio The 'Star' Of This Year's ASH Meeting

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Jefferies Calls Bluebird Bio The 'Star' Of This Year's ASH Meeting
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Bluebird bio Inc (NASDAQ: BLUE)'s encouraging data release over the weekend has many experts and Wall Street analysts excited about the company's prospects in treating sickle cell disease.

The Analyst

Jefferies' Biren Amin upgraded bluebird's stock rating from Hold to Buy with a price target boosted from $130 to $211.

The Thesis

Bluebird's update at the American Society of Hematology was on its data with relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma who have failed on a median of seven prior lines, Amin said in a Monday note. (See Amin's track record here.) 

Most of the attention was focused on the 57-percent-complete response as being "compelling," as it represents an improvement from 27 percent at ASCO, Amin said. But most investors were already aware since ASCO that ORR/CR rates for the company's therapy bb2121 exceed those of Darzalex, he said. 

"At ASH, the question of durability of response (DoR) for bb2121 arose and according to our calculations of the active dose groups, the DoR at this juncture is 8.5 mos w/ bb2121 vs 7.5 mos w/ Darzalex and could further improve by ASCO '18," the analyst said. 

The sickle cell disease indication was "one we were the least sanguine on," but bluebird has "turned a vital inflection point with data presented at ASH," Amin said.

The company is proving itself to be the "star of ASH" and now supports the case for buying the stock, according to Jefferies. 

Price Action

Shares of bluebird hit a new 52-week high of $222.03 Monday morning and were last trading at $206.25, up 20.51 percent. 

Related Links:

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After Data Release, Cantor Fitzgerald Doubles Bluebird Bio Price Target

Latest Ratings for BLUE

DateFirmActionFromTo
Dec 2018PiperJaffrayDowngradesOverweightNeutral
Nov 2018Leerink SwannInitiates Coverage OnOutperform
Nov 2018Morgan StanleyMaintainsEqual-WeightEqual-Weight

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