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Stocks To Watch Monday
07:24 ET Serologicals patents process that inactivates 'Mad Cow' prions (SERO) 17.14: Co announces that the US Patent Office will issue a patent on its proprietary purification process, which inactivates infectious prions in its bovine-based EX-CYTE, the leading cell culture growth supplement in the world. Prions are defective proteins that cause "mad cow" disease. This patent will remain in force until 2021.
07:21 ET CombiMatrix and Cyrano Sciences collaborate on development of nanotechnology based chemical sensors (CBMX) 4.23: Co announces that it and Cyrano Sciences will collaborate on the development of chemical sensors which merge CombiMatrix's microarray technology with Cyrano's electronic nose technology. This collaboration seeks to expand the applicability of this technology for sensing chemical agents in air and water. Co says this collaboration merges two independent nanotechnologies that will have a broad impact in chemical detection. CBMX is a division of Acacia Research Corp (ACTG 5.80).
07:20 ET MRK cut to Underperform at CSFB 47.13: CSFB downgrades Merck to Underperform from Neutral, citing the stock's 20% rally from the Dec lows; firm expects the stock to continue to struggle over the balance of this year, as the co faces weak growth in core domestic drug lines and possesses only limited pipeline support following the recent loss of key new drug development programs; also, firm says that Merck's 2004 guidance of $3.11-$3.17 remains overly ambitious, and cites the co's misplaced Zocor conversion strategy as well as Arcoxia regulatory risk. Target is $49.
07:17 ET American Independence mentioned positively in Barron's (AMIC) 12.15: Barron's highlights AMIC, a co which is in the business of reinsuring employer medical stop-loss insurance for self-insured group medical plans. Hedge-fund manager Alan Ware of New York City-based Pike Place Capital believes that the co should post big 4Q. For all of 2003, he calculates American will earn about $1.30 a share. And he pegs cash earnings for 2004 at $1.60 or better. If profits do grow 20% or so a year, in 18 months, Ware reckons, American should sell for at least 10 times cash earnings, or $20 a share. In addition, insiders have been steadily accumulating American shares.
07:16 ET Bell Micro sees Q4 results meeting or exceeding consensus (BELM) 9.27: ...
07:15 ET Optika Imaging Systems to be acquired by Stellent for $59 mln (OPTK) 4.28: Under terms of the deal, Optika will receive $10 million in cash and approx 4.1 mln shares of Stellent (STEL) common stock. Separately, STEL announces that it expects to meet prior guidance for Q3.
07:15 ET Ascential enters into license agreement with PeopleSoft (ASCL) 27.10: Co enters into an OEM License Agreement with PeopleSoft. Ascential granted PeopleSoft a non-exclusive, worldwide license to embed into PeopleSoft's product offerings and distribute certain of Ascential's products, including OEM Editions of its DataStage and MetaStage software applications, and certain connectivity products. PeopleSoft will also have the right to participate in Ascential's customer referral program. The deal extends until January 1, 2008.
07:14 ET REGN downgraded at BofA 15.58: Banc of America downgrades Regeneron Pharms to Neutral from Buy and cuts their target to $15 from $21 based on the possible risk of negative results from two upcoming Axokine studies in obesity in late Q1/Q2; also, with no positive news flow from either IL-1 Trap or cancer drug VEGF Trap until 1H05, firm expects few value drivers in 1H04; and although near-term approval of DNA's Avastin could give REGN a sympathy boost given the similarity of both drugs, firm says any gains would be transitory in nature.
"JJ Call me a 2'x4' again on the forum and your going to pay" Sportman.