Despite all of Wall Street's conflict and contention, a fortunate few companies enjoy unanimous support among professional analysts. If the market's movers and shakers all believe these companies will beat the long-term averages, well, surely they will -- right?
Not so fast! With help from the 180,000 members of Motley Fool CAPS, we'll see whether these highflying favorites deserve analysts' unwavering support.
CAPS Rating (out of 5)
CAPS Bullish Sentiment
No. Wall Street Analysts
52-Week Price Change
|AEterna Zateras (Nasdaq: AEZS )||*****||98%||8||21%|
|Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK-B )||*****||98%||18||(4%)|
|Pluristem Therapeutics (Nasdaq: PSTI )||*||85%||3||104%|
Source: Motley Fool CAPS.
There's a wide range of results here, so just because Wall Street loves 'em doesn't mean you have to. Use the list as a jumping-off place for your own research.
Hitting the gas
Although biotech AEterna Zentaris is nestled with Keryx Biopharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: KERX ) hand-in-glove through its colorectal cancer drug perifosine, which it licenses to the pharmaceutical, it was able to report a surprise profit in the third quarter primarily because of higher sales of its hormone drug, Cetrotide, used as part of in vitro fertilization procedures. It also expects similarly high levels of Cetrotide sales in the fourth quarter, as marketing partner Merck Serono pushes the drug, but it's still a loss-making operation.
It's one of the reasons AEterna is banking on perifosine and AEZS-108, a treatment for advanced endometrial and advanced ovarian cancer, both of which are progressing through late-stage trials. Add in AEZS-130, an oral diagnostic test for AGHD, or adult growth hormone deficiency, and it has a pipeline of drugs that ought to prove valuable in years to come.
But highly rated CAPS All-Star and biotech guru zzlangerhans has a "jaundiced view" of AEterna's ultimate success with perifosine if for no other reason than there's a long history of small-cap biotechs failing to emerge from late-stage trials successfully: "[K]eep in mind that a recent review published in [the Journal of the National Cancer Institute] found that the number of positive phase III trials of cancer drugs from biotechs with caps under 300M in the last ten years was ... zero. I do feel it is more than likely that the share price will move higher from here before topline data, although the decline might certainly continue further before that happens."
Let us know in the comments section below or on the AEterna Zentaris CAPS page whether you think the biotech can run against the tide of history, and add it to your watchlist to be notified of the latest developments.
Not discounted enough
Warren Buffett's back to buying the U.S. again, and his revelation that Berkshire Hathaway acquired a 5% stake in IBM (NYSE: IBM ) with a $10.7 billion cumulative purchase shows he thinks there are some real values in the market today. And that's despite a better than 30% jump in value by IBM over the past year (or perhaps the cause of it).
But he's also upped his stake in Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC ) -- or rather protege Todd Combs did. He's already advised investors to see more "Todd purchases" like the one he made in Dollar General to be revealed. Yet he won't reveal everything: The SEC grants Buffett special exemptions to reporting requirements that everyone else has to adhere to, because when he buys a stock it typically drives the price up as everyone else piles in. Essentially, the government ensures that he gets extra profits from his investments. No wonder he doesn't mind calling for higher taxes.
That's why you don't bet against Buffett. As CAPS All-Star TheMiracleDJR notes, between him and Charlie Munger, it's a tag-team duo you don't want to get in the middle of.
Buffett-Munger greatest duo in history of business. The Corzine disaster further cements their true greatness. A stable of cash cows likely to remain so long after both men are gone.
Stem-cell research company Pluristem Therapeutics is on a roll. It reported its first quarterly revenues last week, after a licensing deal with United Therapeutics (Nasdaq: UTHR ) saw cash start filling its coffers. United wants to use Pluristem's cells to treat pulmonary hypertension, but it's also seeing positive results from its trials for using its cells to treat critical limb ischemia, which is the end stage of peripheral artery disease.
Pluristem's shares have doubled in value over the past year, even though they sit some 35% below their 52-week highs. But with only a few dozen CAPS members weighing in on its prospects, the biotech is flying under the radar of both Main Street and Wall Street.
Agree to disagree
It pays to start your own research on these stocks on Motley Fool CAPS. Read a company's financial reports, scrutinize key data and charts, and examine the comments your fellow investors have made, all from a stock's CAPS page.
Sign up today for the completely free service, and tell us whether these stocks deserve to have Wall Street marching lockstep.