Precarious stock rebound By Karen Bernstein

It's not yet time to break out the champagne. Even though two companies closed public offerings last week and a third filed for an initial offering, there's no reason for cash-hungry companies to rush to their local investment bankers and start dusting off their prospectuses.

The glimmer of a stock price rebound among the biotechs remains tentative, and prognosticators among investment bankers and technicians provide many reasons for the doldrums to continue.

The IPO by Telor Ophthalmics Inc. (TELR) was the first to close since April 1, though at $8 a share, the company took a steep discount on its originally proposed $12-$14 price. ImClone Systems Inc. sold 1.5 million shares at $7, which was $2 below the price of the stock when the company filed in April.

'Nuclear winter'

Other than Genzyme Transgenics Corp., which filed for an IPO at $9-$11, there's not much sitting in the pipeline. Viagene Inc., which filed for an IPO in January, formally withdrew its offering last week. In the IPO arena, that leaves Oclassen Pharmaceuticals Inc., BioCryst's silent filing, and five companies that have postponed or delayed offerings, some of which presumably could be reactivated. There are no follow-on offerings waiting.