Buzz Stocks: Tiffany & Co, Biogen Idec, Intercept

Today's stocks to watch in the news include Tiffany & Co. (TIF), Biogen Idec Inc (BIIB), and Intercept Pharmaceuticals Inc (ICPT)

Mar 20, 2015 at 9:20 AM
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U.S. stocks appear poised to rebound this morning, which would be an appropriate end to what's been an extremely volatile week. In company news, today's stocks to watch include luxury jeweler Tiffany & Co. (NYSE:TIF), as well as biotechs Biogen Idec Inc (NASDAQ:BIIB) and Intercept Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:ICPT).

  • TIF is bracing for a 3.3% drop out of the gate, after the firm posted its first year-over-year sales decline in five years during the fourth quarter, and predicted a 10% drop for the current quarter. However, the company's per-share fourth-quarter profit of $1.51 was in line with the Street's consensus estimate. On the charts, it's been a bad year for Tiffany & Co., which has plunged more than 19% since the start of 2015 to rest at $86.37, and earlier this month touched an annual low of $82.75. Yet, the majority of covering analysts maintain "buy" or better recommendations on the stock, and its average 12-month price target of $103.77 stands at a 20% premium to Thursday's close. This leaves the door wide open for a potential round of downgrades and/or price-target reductions.

  • An Alzheimer's drug developed by BIIB produced "statistically significant" evidence of slowing the disease's effects on patients during an early stage study. The pharmaceutical firm will now advance the treatment to late-stage clinical trials, pending approval from the Food and Drug Administration. Investors are reacting positively to the news, with shares of Biogen Idec Inc sitting nearly 10% higher ahead of the bell -- which would add to the stock's 27.8% year-to-date climb to $433.65, and put the shares in record-high territory once again. Most brokerage firms are already in BIIB's bullish corner, with 12 of 16 doling out "buy" or better ratings, versus four "holds" and not a single "sell." Echoing this, both Piper Jaffray and Cowen and Company boosted their price targets on BIIB to $500 this morning.

  • Finally, ICPT also appears ready to run higher, after a Phase 2b FLINT trial of obeticholic acid (OCA) showed promise in treating patients with neglected chronic liver diseases. The company will present its data today at the American Association for the Study of Liver Disease (AASLD) and Industry Colloquium, which is focused on novel targets and therapies. Shifting gears, Intercept Pharmaceuticals Inc is sitting roughly 9% above the flatline in electronic trading, which is more of the same for a stock that's advanced 85% year-to-date to rest at $288.51. Meanwhile, bullish betting is running fast and furious at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX). ICPT's 50-day call/put volume ratio across those exchanges is 2.53, which ranks in the 97th percentile of its annual range.

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