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Biotech Winners And Losers From Congress' Latest Funding Bill

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Biotech Winners And Losers From Congress' Latest Funding Bill
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Congress introduced the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2018 on Wednesday, and the bill contains fewer health care provisions than many traders expected.

Still, Height Capital Markets analyst Andrea Harris said on Thursday there are several pharmaceuticals and managed care winners and losers from the new bill.

Winners

Among the biggest winners is Omeros Corporation (NASDAQ: OMER).

“Title XIII, which begins on page 2028 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, is a narrowly designed provision that extends by two years the pass-through status period for qualifying drugs, including OMER's Omidria,” Harris said.

Novartis AG (ADR) (NYSE: NVS) and Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) will continue to benefit from the status quo, but the same can't be said for a couple of other big names.

Losers

Amgen, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMGN) and Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) investors are likely disappointed the new bill doesn’t include provisions both companies had been pushing for.

“The Consolidated Appropriations Act does not include a separate pass-through-related provision advocated by Amgen and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) that would have reversed a reimbursement disadvantage that resulted from the 340B payment cuts in the 2018 outpatient prospective payment system (OPPS) rule,” Harris said.

“This policy, which would have applied 340B reimbursement cuts to drugs with pass-through status (they are currently exempt from the cuts) originally surfaced in the House-passed spending bill in February (the Senate version, which became law, did not include the change)."

Congress didn't scale back the required drug discounts sold in the Medicare Part D coverage gap, meaning manufacturers are still on the hook for providing 70 percent discounts starting in 2019.

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Latest Ratings for NVS

DateFirmActionFromTo
May 2018HSBCDowngradesBuyHold
May 2018Credit SuisseUpgradesUnderperformNeutral
Jan 2018Leerink SwannMaintainsMarket PerformMarket Perform

View More Analyst Ratings for NVS
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