Buzz Stocks: Amgen, Inc., Kite Pharma Inc, and WebMD Health Corp.

Today's stocks to watch in the news include drugmakers Amgen, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMGN) and Kite Pharma Inc (NASDAQ:KITE), as well as health resource WebMD Health Corp. (NASDAQ:WBMD)

by Josh Selway

Published on Sep 27, 2016 at 9:30 AM

U.S. stocks are now looking at a lower open, with Dow futures reversing course following last night's presidential debate. Among specific equities in focus today are drugmakers Amgen, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMGN) and Kite Pharma Inc (NASDAQ:KITE), as well as health resource WebMD Health Corp. (NASDAQ:WBMD).

  • AMGN is facing a 2% drop when the market opens, due to more negative drug news. Specifically, the company announced its multiple myeloma treatment, Kyprolis, failed to meet its primary endpoint in a Phase 3 study. Even with today's potential slip, Amgen, Inc. should remain in positive year-to-date territory, settling Monday at $173.53, with an early price-target increase to $206 from $204 at Goldman Sachs possibly softening the blow. Still, call buyers may be getting nervous. For instance, AMGN's 10-day call/put volume ratio at the International Securities Exchange (ISE), Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE), and NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) comes in at 1.86, which is higher than 72% of the past year's readings. 
  • On the other hand, KITE is set to jump 12.3% at the open, after the biotech's drug for non-Hodgkin lymphoma met its primary goal in a late-stage study. What's more, SunTrust Robinson raised its price target to $80 from $70 -- in territory not charted since December. The move will have the shares testing its 2016 breakeven level, following their close at $54.98 on Monday. In the meantime, a number of bears are likely in for a rough session. Specifically, short interest represents over 16% of Kite Pharma Inc's float -- or almost two weeks' worth of buying power, going by the stock's average daily volume. 
  • WBMD is down 0.8% in electronic trading, following news that Senior Vice President of Finance Blake DeSimone will replace outgoing CFO Peter Anevski. This news is apparently overshadowing the company's announcement that its current-quarter and full-year financial results will be in the high end of its forecast. On the charts, the stock has cooled considerably since its record high of $67.55 in May, last seen at $50.40. Analysts remain optimistic, however, as six of eight rate the stock a "strong buy," with zero "sell" ratings on the books. 

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