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Heading into the final two hours of the session, three of the top movers are pharmaceutical concern AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (NYSE:AZN), biotech issue InterMune Inc (NASDAQ:ITMN), and identity theft expert Lifelock Inc (NYSE:LOCK). Here's a quick roundup of how this trio of names is performing on the charts so far.
- AZN has plummeted nearly 13% to trade at $70.15, after rejecting a takeover proposal from Pfizer Inc (NYSE:PFE). On the sentiment front, the Street is bearish toward the U.K.-based firm. Four out of six covering analysts have given AstraZeneca plc (ADR) shares a "hold" or "strong sell" recommendation, and overnight, Leerink and Panmure both downgraded AZN. Meanwhile, the stock's consensus 12-month price target of $76.67 sits at a mild 9.3% premium to the current price.
- ITMN is soaring this afternoon on positive results from a late-stage study of its lung disease medication pirfenidone, and plans to resubmit the drug for U.S. regulatory approval. At last check, the stock was 15% higher at $39.45, and earlier hit a multi-year high of $39.90. Option bulls are likely rejoicing at these developments; InterMune Inc's 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) call/put volume ratio checks in at a brow-raising 17.15 -- just 10 percentage points from a 12-month high. However, with one-tenth of the equity's float sold short, it's possible some of these traders are short sellers hedging their bearish bets.
- Finally, LOCK has dropped 17% to hover at $10.77, after being forced to suspend its mobile financial app Lemon Wallet, due to its failure to achieve company security standards. On the charts, the equity has now lost more than one-third of its value on a year-to-date basis. Meanwhile, on the sentiment front, short interest in Lifelock Inc increased 34% during the past two reporting periods, and now comprises 10% of the stock's float. In fact, it would take nearly a week to cover these shorted shares, at LOCK's average daily trading volume.