Immunotherapy ETF Heats Up

Noah Kiedrowski - Contributor - Biotech - Immunotherapy

Immunotherapy Heats Up

The Immunotherapy space has ushered in a new class of therapies to combat a variety of diseases, most notably cancer. Immunotherapy has been emerging from the backdrop of oncology research for years most notably from smaller companies such as Dendreon, Kite Pharma and Juno Therapeutics as leaders in the space. Dendreon was first-to-market with its activated cellular therapy, Provenge® in 2010 followed by a 7-year gap until Novartis’ Kymriah® was approved in August of 2017 which was shortly followed up by the approval of Kite Pharma’s Yescata® in November of 2017.

Now, immunotherapy is at the forefront in oncology as a leading therapeutic which has been shown to cure cancer in previously untreatable patients. Immunotherapy ushers in a new class of promising therapies by harnessing the body’s immune system to recognize and eradicate debilitating diseases, specifically cancer. Immunotherapy has been shown to have a favorable side effect profile and best-in-class efficacy across many different disease states. These therapies may provide a powerful technology to contend with a host of diseases, and in a future state, may potentially serve as a preventative technology similar to a traditional vaccine. Immunotherapy has evolved into many different classifications with differing modalities over the past several years, which has given rise to a growing number mid and small-cap biotechnology companies. In late 2015, The Loncar Cancer Immunotherapy ETF (NASDAQ:CNCR) and provides investors with an opportunity to invest in this unique cohort.

Immunotherapy – The Science

Generally speaking, cancer is immuno-tolerant, meaning these cancerous cells evade the surveillance mechanisms of the immune system and thus persist, proliferate and manifest disease within the host. The immune system cannot distinguish cancerous cells from normal host cells thus giving rise to malignancy and metastasis. Continue reading "Immunotherapy ETF Heats Up"

U.S. Crude Production Eased In December

Robert Boslego - Contributor - Energies - U.S. Crude Production

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported that December U.S. crude production averaged 9.949 million barrels per day (mmbd) in December, off 108,000 b/d from November. The primary cause of the decline was unexpected seasonal factors, which caused production in the Gulf of Mexico (GOM) to drop by 131,000 b/d and output in North Dakota to dip by 15,000 b/d. The EIA had expected a 30,000 b/d dip in GOM production. Meanwhile, production in Texas and New Mexico reached new historically-high levels of 3.933 mmbd and 556,000 b/d, rising 36,000 b/d and 26,000 b/d, respectively.

It is worth noting that EIA also revised its November estimate up by 19,000 b/d to 10.057 mmbd. As a result, November 2017 broke the November 1970 production record of 10.044 mmbd.

Even with December’s seasonal drop, the EIA-914 Petroleum Supply Monthly (PSM) figure was still 193,000 b/d higher than the week data reported by EIA in the Weekly Petroleum Supply Report (WPSR), averaged for the month, of 9.756 mmbd. EIA’s model failed to forecast the surge in production which began in August and totaled 846,000 b/d through November. Continue reading "U.S. Crude Production Eased In December"

The Ultimate Buzz Word ETF

Matt Thalman - Contributor - ETFs - Buzz Word ETF

On January 30th the team at Exchange Traded Concepts, an Exchange Traded Fund issuer, released the "Ultimate Buzz Word" ETF, the Innovation Shares NextGen Protocol ETF (KOIN). Alright, I’ll admit, the name may not be loaded with buzz words. But the fund’s concept is loaded with recently popular buzz words such as “Blockchain” and “Artificial Intelligence.”

The KOIN ETF is a fund that tracks an index that uses artificial intelligence to pick global stocks which have current or future interests in blockchain technology. On the surface, this ETF just feels like someone trying to take advantage of today’s hot investing buzz words.

Even after Bitcoin rose from under $1,000 to above $19,000 in less than a year, most retail investors didn’t fully understand what blockchain technology was. But they knew that while a lot of big-name investors and economist were skeptical of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies’, the one thing most people would agree on was that blockchain technology was great. Continue reading "The Ultimate Buzz Word ETF"

Hasbro: Positive Earnings and Growth Ahead

Noah Kiedrowski - Contributor - Biotech - Hasbro Inc.

Introduction and Backdrop:

Hasbro Inc. (NASDAQ:HAS) just released earnings, and the stock shot up from $94 to $103 or 9.5% as a result of navigating the challenging retail landscape and positive commentary on the conference call for future growth avenues. In mid-summer of 2017, Hasbro had witnessed a two-leg sell-off from its 52-week high of $116 to $88 or a 24% slide. The first leg down was from $116 to $95 followed by a second leg down from $95 to $88. These sell-offs were primarily due to retail softness and lowered guidance due to the Toys R Us bankruptcy filing which drove the stock down to $88. Hasbro was faced with a challenging environment and had to lower its guidance through the holiday season. The stock has been trading erratically since mid-summer of 2017 with 10% swings in the stock price. Ostensibly, Hasbro looks to be turning the corner and effectively managing this challenging backdrop and forging ahead with many current and future growth catalysts.

Hasbro has many current and future growth catalysts with major movie franchises, specifically with Marvel and Star Wars. Thor: Ragnarok and Star Wars: The Last Jedi rounded out 2017, posting worldwide box office gross of $854 million and $1.33 billion, respectively. Black Panther posted record-breaking numbers in its debut with $235 million domestic opening at the box office over the Presidents Day weekend. Upcoming Marvel and Star Wars movies include Avengers: Infinity War, Star Wars Han Solo and Ant-Man and The Wasp to highlight a few major films. Taking into account Hasbro’s growth, the potential acquisition of Mattel, Q1-Q2 2018 catalysts, trading at a P/E of ~20, boasting a 2.4% dividend yield and initiatives within Hasbro Studios to propel growth further presents a compelling long-term buy. Continue reading "Hasbro: Positive Earnings and Growth Ahead"

Disney: Black Panther Setting The Pace

Noah Kiedrowski - Contributor - Biotech

Setting The Pace and FY2018:

The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) is fresh off reporting its first quarter for FY2018 and has set the stage for a strong year ahead. The studio segment is off to a great start with record-breaking movie releases such as Thor: Ragnarok, Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Coco surpassing $854 million, $1.33 billion and $715 million in worldwide box office receipts, respectively. Black Panther entered the fray with a record-breaking President’s Day weekend opening of $185 million in domestic box office sales. Disney has one of its biggest movie slates for FY2018 with Ant Man and The Wasp, The Avengers: Infinity War, Solo: A Star Wars Story, The Incredibles 2 and Mulan (live-action film) around the corner. Parks and Resorts are posting strong growth where revenues grew 13% year-over-year in Q1, and operating income now surpasses its Media Networks segment income, bringing in $1.35 billion vs. $1.19 billion, respectively. Disney is aggressively trying to shore up its stalling Media Networks segment with a confluence of growth catalysts via streaming with Hulu (30% stake and will likely be expanded to a majority 60% stake after the Fox acquisition), BAMTech, Sling, ESPN streaming service and a Disney branded service coming in 2019. Disney is evolving to address the deteriorating Media Networks business segment with major streaming initiatives. Disney offers a compelling long-term investment opportunity considering the growth, Fox acquisition, pipeline, Media Networks remediation plan, diversity of its portfolio, tax reform, share repurchase program and dividend growth.
Continue reading "Disney: Black Panther Setting The Pace"