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Intercept Pharmaceuticals (ICPT) Continues to Soar

By  +Follow January 10, 2014 6:50AM
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Shares in biopharmaceutical company Intercept Pharmaceuticals (ICPT) spiked over 70 percent Friday before pulling pack to gains of around 60 percent, one day after shares soared more than 280 percent. Thursday brought news that the company’s lead drug candidate obeticholic acid (OCA) had proven so effective in treating patients with nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (better known as fatty liver disease) that Intercept’s FLINT trial was halted early because it had already met its primary efficacy endpoint.

Friday’s new spike appears to have been driven by a raft of new analysts upgrades, many of which involved increasing price targets by more than $200 a share. This new surge in buying saw volume well over ten times the previous daily average and exceeding 25 percent of the stock’s total float.

All told, Intercept is up over 550 percent in the last two days alone, boosting the 45-person company’s market cap by about $7.5 billion in 48 hours.

Analysts Show the Love

Among those analysts who made dramatic increase in their price targets for Intercept were Citigroup, which went from $60 to $400, Oppenheimer, which went from $94 to $360, and Needham, who went from $55 to $320.

Merrill Lynch, though, took the cake, boosting their target from $81 to $872.

Driving this newfound optimism for Intercept’s future is the size of the market involved. Fatty liver disease is an increasingly common problem that currently lacks a strong treatment, so the first firms to present a commercially available drug stand to profit considerably.

Citigroup’s Jonathan Eckard and Yaron Werber explained their massive upgrade:

“It is estimated ~10-15 percent of the US population has some level of early stages of NASH (inflammation and fibrosis of the liver) and ~6 million (in the US alone) of these have a more advanced form of NASH preceding liver cirrhosis. NASH is becoming recognized as a leading cause of liver transplants in the western world. There are no approved drugs for treatment, and OCA is the first agent to show a benefit here and is now positioned to establish itself as the standard of care. Also liver fibrosis has long been a target for large pharma/biotech and the scarcity of other drugs makes [Intercept Pharmaceuticals] an attractive acquisition target…

“We are buyers of [Intercept Pharmaceuticals], and see value left on the table despite yesterday’s ~300 percent gain on positive NASH…data for lead agent obeticholic acid (OCA). In our view [Intercept Pharmaceuticals'] ~$5.4 billion market cap doesn’t reflect the multi-billion dollar NASH opportunity. A “back of the envelope” valuation applying a common biotech of 4x sales multiple projects <$1.5 billion in OCA sales. We believe this meaningfully underestimates the drug’s potential that we expect could top >$5 billion/yr.”

GALT, CNAT Lifted With Rising Tide

The huge two-day run for Intercept has also boosted the fortunes for other companies working on similar treatments for liver disease.

Galectin Therapeutics (GALT) has seen shares nearly double in value over the last two days, and Conatus Pharmaceuticals (CNAT) has shot up over 130 percent over the same time period.

DISCLOSURE: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors, and do not represent the views of equities.com. Readers should not consider statements made by the author as formal recommendations and should consult their financial advisor before making any investment decisions.


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Results for icpt
Daily Contracts
22 Oct 14 12:59:36
Real-Time feed of company contracts, original agreements and executive updates from Intercept Pharmaceuticals $ICPT http://t.co/K84XvqdhHA
Jim
22 Oct 14 12:26:36
RT @SmarterAnalyst: $ICPT Deutsche Bank Reiterates Buy On Intercept Pharmaceuticals, $500 PT http://t.co/Ps5nuKrJt8
Smarter Analyst
22 Oct 14 12:09:03
$ICPT Deutsche Bank Reiterates Buy On Intercept Pharmaceuticals, $500 PT http://t.co/Ps5nuKrJt8
Venator
22 Oct 14 11:29:12
Has my ticker parade has been stuck for past hour...? lol $TSLA $NFLX $ACHN $ICPT $FB
US Banking News
22 Oct 14 06:13:41
Intercept Pharmaceuticals Gets Average Rating of Buy from Analysts $ICPT http://t.co/8Llmm0LASC
CapCube 2.0
21 Oct 14 12:10:23
Stocks in the red today: $CMG $OCN $ICPT $CLF $ANR $GDP $PBR to name a few .... $CMG is sweetness ....
Cornholio
21 Oct 14 11:41:25
@OptionsHawk someone is going to take $ACHN & $ICPT out eventually
Tom Wrigley
21 Oct 14 10:04:56
Some nLod in Healthcare / Biotech related stocks $ICPT $WBMD $CLVS $CBST $MDAS $UTHR $ATHN
Venator
21 Oct 14 09:32:04
$ICPT Picked up some at 227.5, may sell in combo with 223s of last week. Or, may hold along with others.
Peter Rumble
21 Oct 14 03:01:54
$ICPT is strong buy with bullish reversal last week, all targets 500$, very undervalued $SPY $IBB $GILD $ISRG
Eternity101
20 Oct 14 21:40:28
$ICPT -- what was that all about AH ?
Joe
20 Oct 14 21:37:25
@Opinterest Would help expand their multiple. But who are good candidates? $icpt $cnat? Not sure the pickings are so good right now?
Les
20 Oct 14 21:11:38
$ICPT stop raised. holding from $185/190. http://t.co/jNVRLyCG5q
InsiderTradingWire
20 Oct 14 19:30:48
$ICPT | Intercept Pharmac is down 22% since we reported $33,161,087 of insider selling on 08/28/2014. Did you ... - http://t.co/NT63ZCgfzW
Venator
20 Oct 14 09:19:53
@Rebuy27 That showed courage... but maybe better word is 'conviction'! $ICPT
Yu Zhu
20 Oct 14 09:13:47
RT @ScripMandy: @chasingthealpha Even if $ICPT NASH data publication is phenomenal, $200-plus stock may not last. Will be competition in th…
Venator
20 Oct 14 08:57:54
Wish I hadn't been such a deer-in-the-headlights at 180 last week! $ICPT
Yu Zhu
20 Oct 14 08:56:30
RT @svKatface: $ICPT Added some more in my IRA acct, at 232.
Venator
20 Oct 14 08:56:07
$ICPT Added some more in my IRA acct, at 232.
Bryon Franzen
20 Oct 14 08:49:38
RT @biotrader4gain: @biotrader4gain $ICPT and $CNAT doing very well... that's why i am adding swinging $OCRX
BioAlert
20 Oct 14 07:40:28
@biotrader4gain $ICPT and $CNAT doing very well... that's why i am adding swinging $OCRX
BioAlert
20 Oct 14 07:27:25
$CNAT .. $ICPT doing well.. $CNAT trying to break that $7 line.
Venator
20 Oct 14 07:18:32
$ICPT Hit +$ 12 in first 45 minutes... ok, I'll stop the blow-by-blow ;->
$$$ Money $$$
20 Oct 14 07:17:14
$ICPT 235.85 nice continues bullish chart
Venator
20 Oct 14 07:05:48
$ICPT Anybody day trading this? +9 after 30 minutes...
R4inb0w
20 Oct 14 01:02:04
#NASH competition : update of an Interesting chart $GNFT vs $ICPT & others (1 Year) #GENFIT #GFT505 http://t.co/PVhDJywIOJ
joshwin
19 Oct 14 23:02:13
RT @chasingthealpha: $ICPT any buys ever? Cashing out 2020 options http://t.co/KOpOK9xDtF
Big Money
19 Oct 14 15:30:35
ALL NEW TO $ICPT please be aware of the info!!!! http://t.co/RGtTE3UNf4
maxime mignot
19 Oct 14 14:23:58
RT @R4inb0w_: $GNFT #NASH #Liverdisease Ytd, Oct.16 Publication of research results by #GENFIT : http://t.co/WzrAQqo5hk $ICPT http://t.co/R…
Carine
19 Oct 14 14:01:06
RT @R4inb0w_: $GNFT #NASH #Liverdisease Ytd, Oct.16 Publication of research results by #GENFIT : http://t.co/WzrAQqo5hk $ICPT http://t.co/R…
Mandy Jackson
19 Oct 14 12:32:56
@chasingthealpha Even if $ICPT NASH data publication is phenomenal, $200-plus stock may not last. Will be competition in that space.
Shomik Ghosh
19 Oct 14 12:32:53
@chasingthealpha seems like $icpt is more automatic selling, smaller lots as % of holdings, $blue is troublesome though
Patrick
19 Oct 14 12:16:12
$ICPT any buys ever? Cashing out 2020 options http://t.co/KOpOK9xDtF
TickerChirp
19 Oct 14 11:54:04
Prevalent Tweets for $ICPT (INTERCEPT PHARMA INC symbol icpt) on 10/19/2014 http://t.co/u1HeX4X35K
jakubowski eric
19 Oct 14 03:20:40
RT @R4inb0w_: #Genfit : new patents allowed for #GFT505 in United States and China http://t.co/VkFNfs22OK #Health (via @IBNMoney_com #USA) …
R4inb0w
19 Oct 14 02:03:31
#Genfit : new patents allowed for #GFT505 in United States and China http://t.co/VkFNfs22OK #Health (via @IBNMoney_com #USA) #NASH $ICPT
Stocks News&Markets
18 Oct 14 13:01:01
lx21 made $158,909 on $ICPT -Check it out! http://t.co/SwHWlMUioP Learn #howtotrade http://t.co/axK8SMSgo9 $COCO $HDSN $BIOF $DLIA $LIME
chris lathem
17 Oct 14 17:20:51
I should have tweeted this swing on $ICPT Monday night. ~$50/share profit if sold near today's high. $260ish nxt wk? http://t.co/dqEizDrsoR
Venator
17 Oct 14 13:03:12
$ICPT Appears the magnet of Max Pain (230) got the edge over Harry's fib target (205), this time.
Will
17 Oct 14 11:36:04
Anyone know when $ICPT next catalyst since AASLD is no longer in play?
Tom Wrigley
17 Oct 14 11:14:32
Losing Some Higher Beta (nLod) $PCLN $GOOG $GOOGL $TSLA $MELI $BABA $GWPH $JD $BWLD $WYNN $BLOX $GPRO $ICPT $OVTI $MBLY etc ..
Venator
17 Oct 14 11:01:26
$ICPT Max Pain for maturity 2mrw is 230. http://t.co/EftlVZ9wHZ
Yu Zhu
17 Oct 14 10:25:50
RT @svKatface: Is ok,its Friday, plus $ICPT's delish aroma th past 2days,attracted every swing&day tradr for miles. http://t.co/LKG6oMVyx2
Venator
17 Oct 14 10:12:02
Is ok,its Friday, plus $ICPT's delish aroma th past 2days,attracted every swing&day tradr for miles. http://t.co/LKG6oMVyx2
DOGE4321
17 Oct 14 10:08:15
RT @R4inb0w_: $GNFT #GENFIT : after grant of an American patent for #GFT505 in #NASH, USPTO has allowed patent in hepatic fibrosis (Reuters…
Daniel De Oliveira
17 Oct 14 10:03:01
RT @R4inb0w_: $GNFT #GENFIT : after grant of an American patent for #GFT505 in #NASH, USPTO has allowed patent in hepatic fibrosis (Reuters…
Stocks News&Markets
17 Oct 14 10:01:00
lx21 made $15,427 on $ICPT -Check it out! http://t.co/cIuXaVKgd0 Learn #howtotrade http://t.co/axK8SMSgo9 $BUR $RADA $WLB $IBIO $DLIA
R4inb0w
17 Oct 14 09:57:51
$GNFT #GENFIT : after grant of an American patent for #GFT505 in #NASH, USPTO has allowed patent in hepatic fibrosis (Reuters) $ICPT $GILD
Lauren Holmes
17 Oct 14 09:19:13
$ICPT Possible $250's at lunch time...and $258 closing. For More Detail connect here http://t.co/IhJaUAjPfb
BS
17 Oct 14 09:09:20
RT @R4inb0w_: $GNFT #NASH #Liverdisease Ytd, Oct.16 Publication of research results by #GENFIT : http://t.co/WzrAQqo5hk $ICPT http://t.co/…
				
				
By  +Follow January 10, 2014 6:50AM
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