Crude Oil Lower on OPEC Announcement

The Vienne Group agreed to extend its production cut for another nine months 

Traders had anticipated the move and had pushed prices up ahead of the meeting

 

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Oil glut continues to push prices lower

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, #OPEC, ministers meeting in Vienna produced an agreement to maintain production reduction of 1.8 million barrels per day for another nine months. The so-called Vienne Group, which is OPEC nations plus allied oil producing nations, most notably Russia, made the announcement today.

Last week, Kuwaiti Oil Minister said the 9-month production cut was a done deal. He had said OPEC is committed to restore the balance of the oil market and is not ruling out any option for discussion at the upcoming meeting on Thursday, including considering deeper cuts.

Ahead of the meeting, traders had front-run today’s decision, which did not include a positive surprise. The lack of positive surprises (deeper cuts) prompted a sell-the-news response.

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12-Month Chart on Crude Oil with 200-day MA shown

From a #technical standpoint, the reversal in oil comes after its consecutive failed push (on a daily basis) to the $52.00/bbl level, which happened to be the 200-day moving average #MA on the chart (shown in brown). Crude oil made a 2017 high of $55.24 at the start of January, but selling in March pushed the commodity back below its 200-day MA, which happened to be the $52.00 level. Looking at the chart clearly shows the downward trendline resistance. The trendline comes from connecting the highs in January, April and May. Based on the chart, the commodity should see a rebound to the $50 level.

Prices are supported by production cuts from OPEC but have been kept in check by domestic productions. Rig counts in the U.S. have more than doubled in the past 12 months. Canadian rig counts are on the rise too. The Canadian Rig Count rose last week to 85 rigs from last year’s count of 44.

Today’s weakness in oil has weighed on the energy sector. The Energy Select Sector #SPDR #XLE is underperforming the broader averages. At the current price of $66.91, the ETF is down over 1.2%. At that price next support is at $66.16. Resistance is at $67.50. A continued underperformance could impair the broader rally in the S&P 500 (SPX).

Crude has traded today in the range of $48.75 – $52.00. It last traded at $49.00 per barrel. $XOM and $CVX are among losers in the DJIA.

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Sears shares higher on short-covering

Revenue for the quarter of $4.3B was down from $5.4B in the prior year quarter, but was better than the $4.05B consensus

Comparable store sales declined 11.9% in the quarter. Kmart comparable sales declined 11.2%

sears

Shares of #Sears Holdings $SHLD are higher after the troubled department store posted a smaller than expected loss for the first quarter. While the company said it had a challenging quarter, it is committed to returning to “solid financial footing.”

EARNINGS: Sears this morning reported an adjusted loss per share of $2.15, better than the $3.05 loss analysts were expecting. Revenue for the quarter of $4.3B was down from $5.4B in the prior year quarter, but was better than the $4.05B consensus.

Comparable store sales declined 11.9% in the quarter. Kmart comparable sales declined 11.2%, primarily driven by declines in the grocery and household, pharmacy, apparel and home categories, while Sears Domestic comp sales dropped 12.4%, primarily due to decreases in the home appliances, apparel and lawn and garden categories.

Sears Chairman and CEO Edward #Lampert said that while Q1 was “certainly a challenging quarter” for the company, “it was also one that clearly demonstrated our commitment to return Sears Holdings to solid financial footing.” Lampert said Sears is “moving decisively” with its $1.25B restructuring program.

COST-CUTTING EFFORTS: Sears said this morning that it has already actioned $700M in cost savings to-date from its strategic restructuring program through the closure of 150 non-profitable stores, as well as the closure of 92 under-performing pharmacy operations in certain Kmart stores and the closure of 50 Sears Auto Center locations.

Sears CFO Rob Riecker commented that the company “will continue to evaluate our options to deliver further improvements to our operational performance and balance sheet.” Earlier this week, Sears signed a deal to annuitize $515M of pension liability with MLIC, under which MLIC will pay future pension benefit payments to approximately 51,000 retirees. The company is targeting a reduction in its outstanding debt and pension obligations of $1.5B for fiscal 2017.

WHAT’S NOTABLE: Sears CEO Lampert accused the media earlier this month of “unfairly singling out” the company over the past decade, blaming “irresponsible” news for the company’s issues, Reuters reported, citing a presentation Lampert made at an annual shareholders’ meeting.

Sears, which had not reported a profit for six years, is in the midst of a turnaround strategy, but the retailer has warned it may not be able to continue as a going concern.

Sears, like many other mall-dependent retailers, has been impacted by the slowdown in general mall traffic as consumers turn to #Amazon $AMZN and other online retailers.

Lampert recently told the Chicago Tribune that he feels like “We’re ahead of J.C. Penney $JCP , we’re ahead of #Macy’s $M , we’re ahead of #Target $TGT , in some aspects of where the world is going.” He added that Sears is “fighting like hell to change the way people do business with us.”

Meanwhile, Barry Sternlicht, the Chairman & CEO of Starwood Capital Group and Chairman of Starwood Property Trust $STWD , told Bloomberg that Sears is usually the weakest performing store in the mall, adding that he’d like to see Sears in its malls “go away.”

PRICE ACTION: Sears (SHLD) is up 17% to $8.74 in Thursday trading. Note that as of May 15th, a total of 14,418,732 shares were shorted compared to average daily volume of 875,054, and a 16.7 days to cover the shorts.

OTHERS TO WATCH: Peers in the sector trading higher this morning include Macy’s, J.C. Penney and Kohl’s $KSS .

If you are a Sears Holdings stockholder, it is a good idea to sell into the strength and cut your losses.

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Slow Sales Force Signet to sell its Credit Card Portfolio

Continued headwinds in the overall retail environment were exacerbated by a slowdown in jewelry spending

Signet will sell $1B of its prime-only credit quality accounts receivable to Alliance Data Systems 

 

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Mark Light, CEO of #Signet Jewelers $SIG, said, “As anticipated, we had a very slow start to the year as continued headwinds in the overall retail environment were exacerbated by a slowdown in jewelry spending and company specific challenges. He added that we also made important changes to our organizational structure and strengthened our team to drive our 2020 Strategic Vision and deliver operational efficiencies.

He added “We believe today’s announcement regarding the first phase of the strategic outsourcing of our credit portfolio will unlock significant value as it drives EPS accretion and increases our capital efficiency, while enabling us to maintain the full spectrum of our competitive retail credit offering and net sales. Additionally, we will continue to pursue a fully-outsourced model that removes the remaining credit risk from our balance sheet through capital providers.”

The first phase, which is designed to substantially maintain the full spectrum of Signet’s retail financing options and net sales, is expected to be fully implemented by October 2017: Signet will sell $1B of its prime-only credit quality accounts receivable to #Alliance Data Systems Corporation $ADS at par value.

Additionally, under a seven-year agreement, Alliance Data will become the primary provider of credit funding, servicing and associated program functions to Signet’s Kay, Jared and Regional brands’ customers. Signet will retain the existing non-prime accounts receivable on its balance sheet and continue to originate new accounts, while outsourcing the credit servicing functions of those accounts to #Genesis Financial Solutions with an initial term of five years.

Signet will form a seven-year partnership with #Progressive Leasing, a subsidiary of #Aaron’s, Inc. (AAN), to provide a lease-purchase payment program to Signet customers who do not qualify for Signet’s credit programs, or do not wish to pursue a credit option to access Signet’s merchandise.

Following the successful implementation of the first phase, which is expected to occur by October 2017, Signet will have completed the sale of approximately 55% of its credit portfolio to Alliance Data, and established long-term third party relationships to service its full credit programs. As part of the second phase, Signet intends to fully outsource its secondary credit programs, including the sale of the remaining receivables on its balance sheet, as well as funding for new non-prime account originations.

In Thursday’s trading, SIG is lower while ADS and AAN are marginally higher.

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Moody’s Downgrades Hong Kong

The announcement follows Moody’s downgrade of China’s rating to A1 from Aa3

The economic and financial linkages between Hong Kong and China are close and broad-based

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#Moody’s Investors Service has downgraded Hong Kong’s local currency and foreign currency issuer ratings to Aa2 from Aa1 and changed the outlook to stable from negative.

The announcement follows Moody’s downgrade of China’s rating to A1 from Aa3 and change in the outlook to stable from negative.

The downgrade in Hong Kong’s rating reflects Moody’s view that credit trends in China will continue to have a significant impact on Hong Kong’s credit profile due to close and tightening economic, financial and political linkages with the mainland.

Hong Kong’s local currency senior unsecured debt ratings are downgraded to Aa2 from Aa1.

The economic and financial linkages between Hong Kong and China are close and broad-based. Combined with political linkages, this means that any erosion in China’s credit profile, such as that reflected in the 24 May downgrade of China’s rating to A1 with a stable outlook, will ultimately affect Hong Kong’s credit profile and will be reflected in the Special Administrative Region’s rating.

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Changes to S&P Indexes

Standard and Poor’s is reshuffling its Indexes

Most Changes will take effect Friday June 2, 2017

stockwinners.com blog#S&P Dow Jones Indices will make the following changes to the S&P MidCap 400, S&P SmallCap 600, and S&P 500 indices:

  • IHS Markit $INFO will replace TEGNA $TGNA in the S&P 500,
  • #TEGNA and Cars.com $CARS will move to S&P 400;
  • #J.C. Penney $JCP and #Time Inc. $TIME will move to S&P 600 due to reduced market capitalization;
  • #Tuesday Morning $TUES and #Hornbeck Offshore Services $HOS are kicked out of S&P 600 due to market caps.

TEGNA is spinning off Cars.com in a transaction expected to be completed prior to the open on Thursday, June 1, pending final conditions. Post the spin-off transaction, TEGNA’s market capitalization will be more representative of the mid-cap market space.

Independence Realty Trust $IRT will replace Ultratech $UTEK in the S&P SmallCap 600 effective prior to the open on Tuesday, May 30.

S&P SmallCap 600 constituent Veeco Instruments $VECO is acquiring Ultratech in a deal expected to be completed on or about that date pending final conditions.

S&P 500 constituent Yahoo! $YHOO is expected to convert to a publicly traded, non-diversified, closed-end management investment company, following the expected sale of its operational business to S&P 100 & 500 constituent Verizon Communications $VZ in mid-June. Yahoo! will therefore be ineligible for continued inclusion in the S&P 500 following the sale.

To take advantage of the expected increased liquidity surrounding the quarterly rebalance, S&P Dow Jones Indices will remove Yahoo! from the S&P 500 effective at the open on Monday, June 19 to coincide with the June 2017 rebalance. A replacement candidate will be announced at a later date with sufficient notice to clients.

Puma Biotechnology receives FDA Committee Approval for Neratinib

Committee voted 12 – 4 to recommend approval of Neratinib, for the extended adjuvant treatment of HER2-positive early stage breast cancer

The study demonstrated a statistically significant 33% relative reduction of risk of invasive disease recurrence within two years after treatment

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#Puma Biotechnology $PBYI announced that the U.S. FDA Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee voted 12 – 4 to recommend approval of PB272, or neratinib, for the extended adjuvant treatment of HER2-positive early stage breast cancer based on finding that the risk-benefit profile of neratinib is favorable.

The #ODAC vote was based on a review of the clinical development program that included 11 trials in breast cancer and represented approximately 2,000 patient years’ experience. The focus of the meeting was the Phase III ExteNET study, which provided one year of continuous therapy with neratinib after patients completed one year of therapy with a trastuzumab-based regimen.

The study demonstrated a statistically significant 33% relative reduction of risk of invasive disease recurrence within two years after treatment.

ODAC is an independent panel of experts that evaluates data concerning the efficacy and safety of marketed and investigational cancer treatments and makes appropriate recommendations to the FDA.

Its vote is not binding, but is considered by the FDA in its decision making process. “We appreciate the committee’s comments and the support of the many clinicians, patients and advocates who participated in today’s meeting,” Alan H. Auerbach, CEO and President of Puma Biotechnology, said. “We look forward to further discussion with the FDA.”

The stock was last up over 25.2% to $72.40.

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Fidelity Guarantee Sold for $31.10 Per Share

FGL is a leading provider of fixed indexed annuities and life insurance products

CF Corp. will acquire FGL for $31.10 per share in cash, or a total of approximately $1.84B, plus the assumption of $405M of existing debt

Stockwinners blog on FidelityCF Corporation $CFCO and #Fidelity & Guaranty Life $FGL announced that their boards of directors have each unanimously approved a definitive merger agreement under which CF Corp. will acquire FGL for $31.10 per share in cash, or a total of approximately $1.84B, plus the assumption of $405M of existing debt.

The purchase consideration implies a value of 1.1x adjusted book value as of March 31, 2017.

The investor group, which includes the founders of CF Corp., Chinh Chu, and William Foley, II, funds affiliated with #Blackstone $BX , and Fidelity National Financial $FNF , will invest approximately $900M in common and preferred equity to fund the transaction.

FGL is a leading provider of fixed indexed annuities and life insurance products, with approximately $28B of GAAP Total Assets and approximately $1.6B of adjusted book value.

FGL has grown sales by approximately 10% annually from 2012 to 2016, supported by its long-standing relationships with distribution partners, changing U.S. retirement demographics, and an attractive product value proposition to policyholders. Following the close of the transaction, FGL will continue to be led by its current management team under Chris Littlefield as President and CEO. FGL will remain headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa, and will continue operations from Baltimore, Maryland, and Lincoln, Nebraska.

Messrs. Chu and Foley will serve as executive chairmen of the board, which will be composed of a majority of independent directors. In connection with the transaction, CF Corp. and HRG Group (HRG), FGL’s largest shareholder, have approved a purchase agreement under which CF Corp. will acquire certain reinsurance companies from HRG. The transaction is expected to close in Q4.

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Moodys Downgrades China

The downgrade reflects Moody’s expectation that China’s financial strength will erode somewhat over the coming years

The strengths of its credit profile will allow the sovereign to remain resilient to negative shocks, with GDP growth likely to stay strong

#Moody’s Investors Service has #downgraded China’s long-term local currency and foreign currency issuer ratings to A1 from Aa3 and changed the outlook to stable from negative.

Moody’s says, “The downgrade reflects Moody’s expectation that China’s financial strength will erode somewhat over the coming years, with economy-wide debt continuing to rise as potential growth slows. While ongoing progress on reforms is likely to transform the economy and financial system over time, it is not likely to prevent a further material rise in economy-wide debt, and the consequent increase in contingent liabilities for the government.

The stable outlook reflects our assessment that, at the A1 rating level, risks are balanced. The erosion in China’s credit profile will be gradual and, we expect, eventually contained as reforms deepen.

The strengths of its credit profile will allow the sovereign to remain resilient to negative shocks, with GDP growth likely to stay strong compared to other sovereigns, still considerable scope for policy to adapt to support the economy, and a largely closed capital account.”

China’s local currency and foreign currency senior unsecured debt ratings are downgraded to A1 from Aa3.

HIV Vaccine Proves 100% Effective

Overall, 27 of 27 vaccinated participants showed a positive response

The study evaluated a four-dose regimen of PENNVAX-GP DNA

ino#Inovio Pharmaceuticals $INO announced that its #HIV vaccine, #PENNVAX-GP, produced amongst the highest overall levels of immune response rates ever demonstrated in a human study by an HIV vaccine.

The vaccine candidate, PENNVAX-GP, consists of a combination of four HIV antigens designed to cover multiple global HIV strains and generate both an antibody immune response as well as a T cell immune response to both potentially prevent and treat HIV.

These preliminary results are from a study supported by the HIV Vaccine Trials Network, or HVTN, and the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, or NIAID, part of the National Institutes of Health, or NIH, in collaboration with Inovio.

The study evaluated a four-dose regimen of PENNVAX-GP DNA vaccine administered by intradermal, or ID, or intramuscular, or IM, administration in combination with a DNA encoded immune activator, IL-12, or INO-9012.

Overall, 71 of 76 evaluable vaccinated participants showed a CD4+ or CD8+ cellular immune response to at least one of the vaccine antigens. Similarly, 62 of 66 evaluated participants demonstrated an env specific antibody response. None of the placebo recipients demonstrated either a cellular or an antibody response in the study.

Notably, amongst the participants receiving PENNVAX-GP vaccine and IL-12 with intradermal immunization, 27 of 28 participants demonstrated a cellular response and 27 of 28 demonstrated an HIV env specific antibody response.

Amongst the evaluated participants receiving PENNVAX-GP and IL-12 via IM vaccination, 27 of 27 demonstrated a cellular response and 19 of 21 demonstrated an env specific antibody response. Similar immune responses and response rates were achieved via both ID and IM administration of the vaccine although participants vaccinated via intradermal vaccine administration received 1/5th the dose of vaccine compared to those vaccinated via intramuscular administration.

INO closed at $7.13, last traded at $9.90 in pre-market.

Other shares to watch: $AMGN $BIIB $ABBV $MRK $PFE

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Crude Oil Higher on API Data, OPEC Cuts

oil-rigsGasoline inventories fell by 3.15 million barrels, according to the report;

Kuwait’s Oil Minister said on Tuesday #OPEC is committed to restore the balance of the oil market

 

The American Petroleum Institute #API reported a draw of 1.5 million barrels in crude oil inventories for last week, compared to analyst expectations of  a draw of 2.3 million barrels for the week ending May 19. This week’s crude oil inventory draw was accompanied by across the board draws for gasoline, distillates, and oil at the Cushing, Oklahoma facility as well.

Gasoline inventories fell by 3.15 million barrels, according to the report.

For the Week, distillate inventories fell by 1.85 million barrels—offsetting the 1.8 million barrel build last week.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration report on oil inventories is due Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. EDT.

WTI prices have risen this week, from $48.76 last week to $51.41 per barrel on Tuesday. Brent was trading at $54.11, compared to $51.78 last week.

#WTI = West Texas Intermediate

Prices are supported by production cuts from OPEC but prices have been kept in check by domestic productions.

Kuwait Calls for Deeper Cuts

Kuwait’s Oil Minister said on Tuesday #OPEC is committed to restore the balance of the oil market and is not ruling out any option for discussion at the upcoming meeting on Thursday, including considering deeper cuts.

“All options are on the table and could be discussed. However, any agreement should be satisfactory for all parties. And if necessity arises, we could increase the output cut. But it is premature to talk about that now,” the minister said.

He added that Kuwait fully supports the extension of the deal for nine months, as well as all efforts aimed at rebalancing the global oil market. He added that four other non-OPEC countries—Egypt, Norway, Turkmenistan, and Indonesia—could join the output cuts.

Although signs from OPEC producers point to support for a rollover of the cuts, not all members have voiced support for a nine-month extension. $USO closed at $10.64

#OPEC = Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries

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Take-Two Higher Despite Red Dead Redemption 2 delay

Stockwinners.com blogShares of #Take-Two $TTWO rose in Tuesday trading, rebounding from Monday’s after-hours dip following the delay of the video game maker’s highly-anticipated #RedDeadRedemption 2 to Spring of next year.

In addition, the company reported better-than-expected quarterly results and provided guidance for the first quarter and fiscal 2018.

RED DEAD DELAY: In a blog post Monday afternoon, Take-Two subsidiary Rockstar Games said that Red Dead Redemption 2 is now set to launch in Spring 2018 on #Sony’s #SNE #PlayStation 4 and #Microsoft’s $MSFT #Xbox One.

The company originally said the game, which is a sequel to 2010’s Red Dead Redemption, would be available in Fall of 2017. Commenting on the matter, Rockstar said it is “very sorry for any disappointment this delay causes,” yet noted that they would rather deliver a game “only when it is ready.”

Following the news, shares of Take-Two fell as much as 10% in after-hours trading.  Later on, Take-Two CEO Strauss Zelnick noted in the company’s quarterly earnings release that Red Dead Redemption 2 will be the first game from Rockstar to be “created from the ground up” for the latest generation of consoles, and some additional time is necessary to “ensure that they deliver the best experience possible.”

EARNINGS/GUIDANCE: Take-Two Interactive TTWO reported fourth quarter GAAP earnings per share of 89c on net revenue of $571.6M. Analysts were expecting the company to report EPS of 57c on revenue of $355.37M.

Looking ahead, the company said it expects Q1 EPS in the range of 65c-75c on revenue of $390M-$440M. Take-Two also said it sees Q1 net sales of $240M-$290M, compared to analysts’ estimates for $254.5M.

In addition, the video game maker said it sees FY18 EPS of $4.35-$4.65 on revenue of $1.95B-$2.05B and net sales of $1.42B-$1.52B. Analysts expect the company to report FY18 revenue of $2.24B.

Analyst Comments: Prior to Take-Two’s earnings report, #Jefferies analyst Timothy O’Shea said that the selloff related to the Red Dead Redemption 2 delay should be viewed as a buying opportunity. #O’Shea attributed the roughly 10% slip in shares post-market to Rockstar’s “infamous perfectionism” and doesn’t believe that it changes the overall unit sales potential for the title.

The analyst also noted that Take-Two’s shares traded down 6% when Rockstar announced in January 2013 that the release Grand Theft Auto V would be moved by six months, adding that GTA V has sold over 75M units and the stock has “more than quintupled” since that time. O’Shea maintained a Buy Rating on Take-Two with a $65 price target.

Meanwhile, #Piper Jaffray analyst Michael Olson kept an Overweight rating and $77 price target on the stock, saying that he doesn’t expect the RDR2 release change to affect overall sales of the game or average multi-year Take-Two EPS. While Olson noted that some may suggest the delay comes with two potential risks, namely a worse launch window as well as real issues with the game, he said that a spring release should not “significantly” impact overall sales of the game and that he believes Rockstar would have left the timing open-ended if in fact there were major development issues. PRICE ACTION: In afternoon trading, Take-Two (TTWO) advanced about 5% to $72.48.

OTHERS TO WATCH: Shares of the game maker’s competitors were also higher, with Activision Blizzard $ATVI up 1% and Electronic Arts $EA up 0.5% in the afternoon.

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Global Sources Sold for $18 per share

stockwinners com#GlobalSources $GSOL  has entered into an Agreement and Plan of Amalgamation with Expo Holdings and Expo Holdings II, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Parent.

Subject to the terms and conditions set forth each shareholder to receive an amount equal to $18.00 in cash, without interest. The Amalgamation Consideration represents a premium of 50.0% over the company’s closing price of $12.00 per Share on May 22, 2017, the last trading day prior to the date that the Company entered into the Amalgamation Agreement, and a premium of 72.65% to the volume-weighted average closing prices of the Shares during the 30 trading days prior to May 22, 2017.

The Company expects to hold a special meeting of its shareholders to consider and act upon the Amalgamation Agreement and the transactions contemplated by the Amalgamation Agreement as promptly as practicable. Details regarding the record date for, and the date, time and place of, the special meeting will be included in a press release when finalized.

Shares of Global Sources last traded at $17.88.

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Buy Clovis Ahead of ASCO Meeting

American Society of Oncology Meets June 2-6, 2017 in Chicago

Clovis to Present about its Ovarian Cancer Drug

Clovis to Submit NDA for Ovarian Cancer#Clovis Oncology $CLVS announced that abstracts highlighting progress in the rucaparib clinical development program, its treatment for ovarian cancer, will be presented at the 2017 American Society of Clinical Oncology Annual Meeting taking place June 2 to June 6 in Chicago. #ASCO

Four abstracts highlighting ongoing #rucaparib clinical trials will showcase some of the multiple #cancer types in which the compound is being studied, including germline and somatic BRCA-mutated, relapsed, high-grade ovarian cancer; metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer associated with homologous recombination deficiency; and HER2 negative metastatic breast cancer.

Rucaparib is Clovis Oncology’s oral, potent, small-molecule inhibitor of #PARP1, #PARP2 and #PARP3.

In December 2016, the #FDA approved rucaparib tablets as monotherapy for women with advanced ovarian cancer who have been treated with two or more chemotherapies and whose tumors have a deleterious BRCA mutation as identified by an FDA-approved companion diagnostic test.

The #ARIEL3 pivotal study of rucaparib is a randomized, double-blind study comparing the effects of rucaparib against placebo to evaluate whether rucaparib given as a maintenance treatment to platinum-sensitive ovarian cancer patients can extend the period of time for which the disease is controlled after a response to platinum-based chemotherapy.

Top-line results from ARIEL3 are anticipated by the end of June, and the Company plans to provide a more comprehensive presentation of the ARIEL3 results in a scientific session at a medical meeting later this year.

Pending positive data, the Company intends to submit a supplemental New Drug Application for a second line or later maintenance treatment indication within approximately four months of the database lock.

Other stocks to watch in the group: $INCY, $TSRO, $PBYI, $AMGN

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The article does not constitute investment advice. Each reader is encouraged to consult with his or her individual financial professional and any action a reader takes as a result of information presented here is his or her own responsibility.

GE Receives $15 Billion Contract from Saudi Arabia

Building on its more than 80 years of partnership and experience in the Kingdom, #GE said it has taken significant steps in supporting the delivery of Saudi Vision 2030, announcing this weekend in partnership with the Kingdom a range of Memorandums of Understanding and projects valued at $15B – of which almost $7B are GE technology and solutions – across multiple sectors and partners aimed at creating a truly diverse and sustainable economic platform.

The initiatives touch upon the key pillars within #SaudiVision 2030, focusing on transforming the nation into a global investment leader and geographic hub and the upscaling of industrial skills and capabilities.

Among the projects, GE will help make Saudi power generation more efficient and provide digital technology to the operations of oil firm Saudi Aramco, aiming to create $4 billion of annual productivity improvements at Aramco. It will cooperate in medical research and training.

The agreements also place significant emphasis on human capital development and the digital transformation across multiple sectors, with the expanded application of GE’s Predix platform, which utilizes cloud-based data analytics to better ensure and enhance manufacturing efficiency.

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The article does not constitute investment advice. Each reader is encouraged to consult with his or her individual financial professional and any action a reader takes as a result of information presented here is his or her own responsibility.

FDA Approves Puma’s Breast Cancer Drug, Shares Jump

The #FDA said in briefing documents ahead of Wednesday’s advisory panel on #Puma Biotechnology’s breast cancer drug, “In conclusion, the totality of evidence demonstrating the magnitude of activity of neratinib to treat HER2 positive breast cancer across multiple clinical settings, plus the strong neoadjuvant data, provides robust scientific and clinical rationale for proceeding into the adjuvant setting with neratinib.

An unmet medical need exists during the ‘extended adjuvant period’ or the time after standard of care adjuvant therapy with other anti-HER2 therapy has been completed. Patients who have completed their 1 year of trastuzumab adjuvant therapy have no options for further anti-HER2 treatment and enter into a “watch and wait” period. In the interest of being able to turn this time into a period of active anti-HER2 therapy with the intent to provide further improvement in iDFS, neratinib was studied as extended adjuvant therapy in a multicenter randomized, double blind placebo controlled Phase 3 Study 3004 (N=2840) which demonstrated clinically meaningful and statistically significant improvement in iDFS with a manageable safety profile consistent with other approved agents within the class of TKIs targeting EGFR and HER2.

The sponsor believes the totality of the data support approval of #neratinib 240 mg po qd for 1 year in the extended adjuvant setting in order to provide physicians and patients with a new strategic therapeutic option to reduce the rate of recurrence of HER2 positive breast cancer.”

See our earlier blog regarding this stock.

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