3 Horrendous Health-Care Stocks This Week

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April is supposed to bring showers, right? In this last full week of the month, shareholders of several health-care stocks certainly got soaked. Here are three of the most horrendous health-care stocks this week.

The bottom dropped out
Shares of Dyax (UNKNOWN: DYAX.DL  ) plunged 37% this week. Why did the bottom drop out for this stock? Horrendous first-quarter earnings.

Analysts expected Dyax to report revenue of $16 million for the quarter. It wasn't even close, unfortunately. The company recorded $12 million in revenue due largely to sluggishness with its primary product, angioedema drug Kalbitor. Dyax reported a net loss of $11.2 million, or $0.11 per share.

CEO Gustav Christensen attributed Kalbitor's woes to fewer new patients, fewer treatments taken by existing patients, and fewer purchases by distributors. Other than that, it was all sunshine and roses.

Rain clouds
Edwards Lifesciences
(NYSE: EW  ) experienced its second-worst single-day drop in a dozen years on Wednesday. Shares fell 23% for the week as a result.

What happened? For one thing, the heart-valve maker lowered full-year adjusted earnings guidance to a range of $3.00 to $3.10 per share. That's well below analyst expectations of $3.27 per share.

First-quarter results disappointed also. Edwards reported adjusted earnings per share for the quarter of $0.72. Wall Street expected earnings of $0.76 per share. Revenue of nearly $497 million also fell far short of consensus analysts' estimates of $519 million.

Flood of expenses
Ironwood Pharmaceuticals
(NASDAQ: IRWD  ) shares fell 12% this week, after the company reported first-quarter results. A big part of the drugmaker's problems stemmed from soaring sales and administrative costs.

The company reported a first quarter loss of $93.9 million, or $0.87 per share. Part of this loss came from lower-than-expected revenue of $3.3 million. Ironwood's revenue during the first quarter of 2012 totaled $12.2 million.

A bigger factor in the loss, though, was that sales and admin costs more than doubled during the first quarter. Ironwood and its partner Forest Labs (UNKNOWN: FRX.DL  ) launched chronic constipation drug Linzess in December. Sales for the drug since its introduction to the market total around $24 million. Forest Labs says it expects Linzess to rack up $170 million in sales by the end of Q1 2014.

Blue skies
While all three stocks certainly had horrendous weeks, could any of them see blue skies ahead? Maybe all three could. In particular, though, I think Edwards Lifesciences is still a solid pick over the long run.

My view is that Edwards CEO Michael Mussallem was right when he noted that, despite the downward revenue and earnings revisions, "the size of the U.S. transcatheter valve opportunity for the longer term remains unchanged." It might take some time, but I think Edwards will eventually emerge high and dry.

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Related Tickers

12/31/1969 7:00 PM
DYAX.DL $0.00 Down +0.00 +0.00%
Dyax CAPS Rating: **
IRWD $16.10 Up +0.59 +3.80%
Ironwood Pharma CAPS Rating: ***
EW $121.22 Up +2.28 +1.92%
Edwards Lifescienc… CAPS Rating: ****
FRX.DL $0.00 Down +0.00 +0.00%
Forest Laboratorie… CAPS Rating: ****