Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility
Free Article Join Over 1 Million Premium Members And Get More In-Depth Stock Guidance and Research

Why XOMA Corp. Shares Slumped

By Brian D. Pacampara, CFA - Mar 11, 2014 at 3:09PM

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

Does this analyst make a good case? Or is it just more noise from Wall Street?

While Fools should generally take the opinion of Wall Street with a grain of salt, it's not a bad idea to take a closer look at particularly stock-shaking upgrades and downgrades -- just in case their reasoning behind the call makes sense.

What: Shares of XOMA ( XOMA 5.61% ) sank 6% today after MLV & Co. downgraded the biotechnology company from buy to hold.

So what: Along with the downgrade, analyst Graig Suvannavejh lowered his price target to $7 (from $8), representing about 9% worth of upside to yesterday's close. So, while contrarians might be attracted to the stock's weakness of late (it plunged 28% last week on negative phase 2 data associated with gevokizumab's prospects in erosive osteoarthritis), Suvannavejh's call suggests ever-increasing skepticism on Wall Street over the drug's sales potential.

Now what: According to MLV, XOMA's risk/reward trade-off is pretty balanced at this point.

"Simply put, gevo's miss was big, especially given the rev opp'y we saw in EOA ($1B). While advancing gevo into P3 for pyoderma gangrenosum (PG, ultra orphan) has more appeal than going into severe acne, even with higher projected sales ($335M vs. prior $90M), gevo in PG just doesn't pack the same punch revenue-wise as gevo in EOA," said Suvannavejh. "Thus, while also finding the stock fully valued at current levels, we'd like to see more concrete progress with gevo before regaining full confidence in XOMA again."

Of course, when you couple gevo's still-available opportunities in other indications with the stock's big pullback, biotech-savvy value hunters might want to take a closer look.

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis – even one of our own – helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Stocks Mentioned

XOMA Corporation Stock Quote
XOMA Corporation
XOMA
$21.66 (5.61%) $1.15

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning service.

Stock Advisor Returns
656%
 
S&P 500 Returns
144%

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 12/01/2021.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Our Most Popular Articles

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with the Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from the Motley Fool's premium services.