Geron Stock Rose 32% in Week Ended August 24



Stock performance

On August 24, Geron (GERN) stock rose ~28.78% to $5.19 from its prior day’s close of $4.03. In the week ended August 24, it rose 32% from its prior week’s close of $3.92 on August 17.

On August 24, Geron stock was ~29% below its 52-week high of $6.68 on March 22. It fell to a 52-week low of $1.74 on November 14, 2017.

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Reason for the stock hike

On August 24, Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) posted a job opening that mentioned imetelstat. GERN stock rose that day due to the expectation that Johnson & Johnson will continue the partnership with Geron related to imetelstat.

Geron is conducting clinical trials in partnership with Johnson & Johnson for its investigational drug imetelstat. The companies are conducting a Phase 2 IMbark and Phase 2/3 IMerge trial of imetelstat for the treatment of myelofibrosis and myelodysplastic syndrome, respectively.

The IMerge clinical trial, which is being conducted in two parts, is investigating imetelstat in transfusion-dependent individuals with low to intermediate myelodysplastic syndrome whose disease relapsed or are refractory to previous treatment with an ESA (erythropoiesis-stimulating agent).

The IMbark clinical trial of imetelstat is being conducted in individuals who are at an intermediate to high-risk stage of myelofibrosis and whose disease has relapsed after a previous treatment with a JAK (Janus kinase) inhibitor.

Financials in a nutshell

In the second quarter, Geron reported net revenues of $208,000 compared to $174,000 in Q2 2017. In the first half of 2018, it reported net revenues of $526,000 compared to $711,000 in the first half of 2017. Its revenues are primarily from licenses and royalties.

In the second quarter, Geron reported a net loss of $6.9 million compared to $6.4 million in the second quarter of 2017.

It reported R&D (research and development) and G&A (general and administrative) expenses of $3.2 million and $4.2 million, respectively, in the second quarter. Its R&D and G&A expenses were $2.5 million and $4.4 million, respectively, in the second quarter of 2017.

Analyst recommendations

Of the two analysts tracking Geron in August, one has recommended a “buy,” and the other one has recommended a “hold.” On August 26, Geron had a consensus 12-month target price of $5.75, which represents a ~10.79% return on investment over the next 12 months.


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