Monday, July 3, 2000
Genomics investors in the U.S. lived up to their "sell on news" maxim, knocking $3.5 billion off the aggregate market cap of the 12 genomics stocks tracked by BioCentury on the much ballyhooed White House declaration that the human genetic map had been accomplished. The group was valued at $36.05 billion at week's end.
Celera (CRA), which announced it has sequenced the genomes
of five individuals, took the biggest hit, trading down $33.50 to $93.50 on
the week, and shedding $1.9 billion off of its market cap to $5.2 billion. The
losses would have been worse had investors not revisited the sector on Wednesday,
when 11 companies traded up, highlighted by 10 percent-plus moves on the day
by Hyseq (HYSQ), Incyte (INCY), Millennium (MLNM) and Myriad (MYGN).
The updraft in Europe was pretty much confined to the U.K., as German investors had already bid up prices in the prior week in anticipation of the announcement.
Functional genomics company Oxford GlycoSciences (LSE:OGS)
gained 147.5p to 1875p and a market cap of £759 million ($1.1 billion). Celltech
(LSE:CCH; CLL) added 76.5p to 1276.5p and a market cap of £3.4 billion ($5.2
billion). The halo effect boosted Cambridge Antibody (LSE:CAT) by 265p (10 percent)
to 2990p and a value of £1 billion ($1.5 billion).
Philippe Cramer, head of life science research at Close Brothers, said "the impact of the human genome project talked up prices in Germany on the previous week, but last week the merely symbolic news led German retail investors to take profits."