Health Care Sector Update for 03/17/2017: NH,THLD,INNL

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Top Health Care Stocks

JNJ +0.02%

PFE +0.13%

MRK +0.46%

ABT +0.14%

AMGN -6.57%

Health care stocks were mixed this afternoon, with the NYSE Health Care Index rising about 0.1% while shares of health care companies in the S&P 500 were down 0.25% as a group.

In company news, Nant Health ( NH ) rallied Friday after the founder and chief executive of the cloud-based healthcare information technology company sent a written response to an medical-news website detailing "multiple inaccuracies" he claimed were in a recent report that sent the company's stock price reeling.

In a pair of letters today, Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong slammed Statnews.com for inaccuracies he believes the Boston Globe-affiliated website published in a March report about NantHealth. For example, he took issue with the reporter writing she was stymied trying to find experts to interview who could talk about the scientific progress of Cancer MoonShot 2020, the federal initiative launched last year that is seeking to create a NASA-like effort focused on finding effective cancer treatments by the end of the decade.

Instead, Soon-Shiong said several investigators participating in the program provided Stat.news with "glowing" written reports on its progress during its first year. The NantHealth executive also challenged assertions in the article he was personally profitting from the large amounts of money chasing a cancer "cure" as well as suggestions the company may have purposely misled investors during its Q3 earnings release late last year.

NH shares were up nearly 13% at $5.70, easing from a prior run as high as $6.43 a share this morning and recouping a portion of its March 6 decline when the stock dropped 23% in value after the Stat.news article appeared online.

In other sector news,

(+) THLD, (+18.5%) Agrees to merge with Molecular Templates in a stock swap that will give THLD shareholders with a 34.4% stake in the combined companies. Longitude Capital also pledges $20 mln equity investment at the close of the transaction.

(-) INNL, (-31.2%) Reports non-GAAP Q4 net loss of $0.26 on about $600,000 in revenue compared with Street view expecting a $0.39 per share net loss on $1.34 mln in revenue. Also continuing to explore strategic options and plans to soon update investors on recent discussions with FDA about its Xaracoll implant device.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , US Markets
Referenced Symbols: NH ,

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