Express Scripts (ESRX) So-Called 'Price War' Comments Taken Out of Context - Analyst (GILD) (ABBV)

December 11, 2013 2:18 PM EST
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Price: $63.26 +0.29%

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    24 Buy, 15 Hold, 2 Sell

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On Tuesday Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ: GILD) stock declined after Bloomberg reported that Express Scripts (Nasdaq: ESRX) may start a price war, pitting Gilead's HCV drug vs AbbVie's (NYSE: ABBV). In the view of Deutsche Bank's Robyn Karnauskas, the comments were taken out of context.

"We spoke to Express-Scripts regarding the comments reported by Bloomberg," said Karnauskas."Below are the key points.

*The comments were taken out of context as the CMO did not mention Gilead or any other company/drug.

*The CMO spoke about various formulary changes and HCV might be one of them. This is not something new and we work on formularies everyday.

*No specific comments were made about Sovaldi price.

*We do not comment on drug/companies specifically. For Gilead drug, the internal committee still has to vote.

*Typically after the drug gets approved, the internal committee takes a vote.

*For a first in class drug, it hits the formulary very fast.

*Then once in a year they discuss formulary decisions again."

Below is the original quote from Express Scripts' chief medical officer, Steven Miller.

"We will identify which drugs can be pitted against each other and make some really tough formulary decisions. If the difference in convenience cannot be demonstrated to have a difference in outcomes, we often recommend coverage of the equally effective, less-convenient product."

Deutsche Bank has a Buy rating on Gilead Sciences with a price target of $95.00.

For an analyst ratings summary and ratings history on Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ: GILD) click here. For more ratings news on Gilead Sciences click here.

Shares of Gilead Sciences closed at $72.81 yesterday.

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