March 21, 2019 8:06am

As Biogen (BIIB -25%) stock plummets after P3 Alzheimer treatment (trial) is discontinued with most pharmaceuticals also under pressure

Pre-open indication: 3 BUY, 1 SELL and 3 TRADEs


One of my focuses is indication analysis. An indication can be a development of almost any kind. Specifically, it may be a confirmed fact, a possible fact, or an absence of “something”, a fragment of information or even an observation. The sole provision is that it provides insight! 

It’s not hard to be right so often, it’s about defining expectation, refining insight and NOT being indentured to ANY financial institution! That’s why my blend of two styles “quantamental” has become common parlance among investors and traders.


Dow futures are DOWN -0.34% (-88 points), S&P futures are DOWN -0.30% (-9 points) and NASDAQ futures are DOWN -0.33% (-25 points)


U.S. stock index futures fell on Thursday morning as investors digested the Fed’s latest announcement on monetary policy;

European markets edge lower ahead of Bank of England rate decision due at mid-day;

Asian shares rise after Fed keeps rates on hold as Japan’s stock markets were closed on Thursday for a holiday;


Data docket: jobless claims out at 8:30 a.m. ET.


Thursday’s indications in the pre-market:

The iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology (IBB) is indicating a NEGATIVE -2.1% DOWNSIDE;

The SPDR S&P Biotech ETF (XBI) is indicating is indicating a NEGATIVE -0.96% DOWNSIDE;

The Health Care Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLV) is indicating a NEGATIVE -0.7% DOWNSIDE;

The iShares Russell 2000 (IWM) is indicating a NEGATIVE -0.3% DOWNSIDE;



From the title, “Shares of Biogen (BIIB, -25%) plummeted toward a near 3-year low in premarket trade Thursday, after the biotechnology company and Japan's Eisai Co. Ltd. (4523) -0.24% ESALY, -0.55% has elected to discontinue late-stage trials of a treatment for Alzheimer's disease, after an independent data monitoring committee said they were unlikely to meet its primary goal <MarketWatch>.

The P3 trials sought to evaluate the efficacy and safety of aducanumab in patients with mild cognitive impairment due to Alzheimer's disease and mild Alzheimer's disease dementia.

"This disappointing news confirms the complexity of treating Alzheimer's disease and the need to further advance knowledge in neuroscience," Biogen Chief Executive Michael Vounatsos said in a statement. The companies are planning to present detailed data from the trials at future medical meetings to help with ongoing research.

A P2 safety study and a P1b study will also be discontinued. Aducanumab is an investigational compound being studied for treatment in early Alzheimer's. Biogen shares were on track to open at the lowest level seen during regular-session hours since July 2016.

 The stock has gained 15.6% over the past 12 months through Wednesday, while the S&P 500 SPX, -0.29% has advanced 4.1%.

From Wednesday’s closing bell post, “even a FDA approval (SAGE) for postpartum depression and a Pfizer (PFE) option to purchase a gene therapy company (Vivet Therapeutics) did not move the risk indicator. As the sector spiraled to another two (2) session bottom; what’s the treatment in development for share pricing depression?”

  • Range of the 18 upside was +0.04% (EDIT) to +13.17% (CUR +$0.088) while the 25 downside ranged from -0.15% (BLFS) to -8.24% (MESO).
  • 8 out of the 18 upside had higher (than the 3 month average) volume
  • 7 out of the 25 downside experienced greater volume (than the 3 month average)
  • In March’s 14 sessions, there were 5 negative and 9 positive closes;
  • In the last three (3) sessions, the IBB has been down -0.96%


Companies in my headlights – It’s your decision; I provide an idea and context:

Regenxbio (RGNX) closed up +$2.01 to $60.59 after Tuesday’s +$0.22 and Monday’s +$0.84 and has a positive +$0.82 or +1.35% aftermarket indication – BUY;

BioMarin Pharmaceuticals (BMRN) closed down -$1.48 to $89.96 after Tuesday’s -$1.92 and Monday’s -$1.17 – 3 negative closes and time for some upside – BUY;

Sage Therapeutics (SAGE) closed down -$3.64 to $152.46 after Tuesday’s -$0.78 to $156.10 and was up +$1.02 or +0.67% with a positive aftermarket indication. Many skimmed the upside of yesterday’s approval- - Maintaining BUY;

CRISPRS Therapeutics (CRSP) closed down again -$0.14 to $37.10 after Tuesday’s-$0.64 and Monday’s -$0.76 with NO aftermarket indication – TRADE;

Editas Medicine (EDIT) closing up +$0.01 to $24.12 after Tuesday’s +$0.14 and Monday’s -$0.32 with a negative -$0.22 or -0.91% aftermarket indication yet, another trading vehicle – TRADE;

Intellia Therapeutics (NTLA) closing up +$0.10 to $16.96 after Tuesday’s +$0.15 and Monday’s +$0.02 to $16.71 with a positive +$0.08 or +0.47% aftermarket indication yet, it’s STILL stuck as a trading vehicle – TRADE;

ReNeuron (RENE.L) closed up +$1.50 to $76.50 after Tuesday’s -$1.00 and Monday’s + +$6.00 on news of its P1/2 trial – and is seeing a -$1.44 or -1.18% decline in its markets –BUY to SELL;


Opinions expressed are those of the author and are subject to change, and not intended to be a forecast of future events, a guarantee of future results, nor investment advice.

Whether information or intelligence is good, bad or somewhere in between; I put into context what is relevant and useful for investors.  All investments are subject to risks. Investors should consider investment objectives.

Henry McCusker, the editor and publisher of RegMed Investors does not hold or have positions in securities referred to in this publication.