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Agenus (AGEN) Up 24.5% Since Last Earnings Report: Can It Continue?

Zacks Equity Research

A month has gone by since the last earnings report for Agenus (AGEN). Shares have added about 24.5% in that time frame, outperforming the S&P 500.

Will the recent positive trend continue leading up to its next earnings release, or is Agenus due for a pullback? Before we dive into how investors and analysts have reacted as of late, let's take a quick look at its most recent earnings report in order to get a better handle on the important catalysts.

Agenus Q3 Earnings Beat Estimates, Revenues Up Y/Y

Agenus reported third-quarter 2019 loss of 33 cents per share, narrower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 38 cents. However, the figure was wider than the year-ago quarter’s loss of 29 cents.

The company generated revenues of $20 million, including non-cash royalties, up from $13 million in the year-ago quarter. Revenues beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $16 million.

Quarterly Highlights

Research and development expenses surged 54.5% to $46.1 million. General and administrative expenses grew 16.3% to $11.1 million.

Pipeline Update

Agenus is a clinical-stage, immuno-oncology company with a comprehensive portfolio consisting of antibody-based therapeutics, adjuvants and cancer vaccine platforms.

The company expects to file a biologics license application (BLA) for its CTLA-4 antibody, Zalifrelimab, and PD-1 antibody, Balstilimab, in 2020. It expects to commercialize both agents in the first half of 2021.

The company also anticipates initiating combination studies for NexGen CTLA-4 and PD-1 antibodies shortly.

Agenus advanced four novel discoveries to investigational new drug (IND) in 2019 and these are now set for clinical trials. These include the company’s next-generation CTLA-4, AGEN1181; the differentiated CD137 molecule, AGEN2373; the first-in-class Treg depleting bispecific antibody, AGEN1223; and GS-1423, a bi-functional molecule, which is now exclusively licensed to Gilead Sciences Inc. and being developed by them.

GlaxoSmithKline plc’s herpes zoster vaccine, Shingrix, which contains Agenus' proprietary immune adjuvant QS-21 Stimulon, achieved more than $1.6 billion in revenues in the first nine months of 2019.

How Have Estimates Been Moving Since Then?

Estimates review followed a flat path over the past two months.

VGM Scores

Currently, Agenus has a nice Growth Score of B, however its Momentum Score is doing a bit better with an A. However, the stock was allocated a grade of F on the value side, putting it in the bottom 20% quintile for this investment strategy.

Overall, the stock has an aggregate VGM Score of C. If you aren't focused on one strategy, this score is the one you should be interested in.

Outlook

Agenus has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). We expect an in-line return from the stock in the next few months.



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