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Catalyst Pharma (CPRX) to Post Q3 Earnings: What's in Store?

Zacks Equity Research

Investors' focus will be on the sales performance of Firdapse when Catalyst Pharmaceuticals, Inc. CPRX reports third-quarter 2019 earnings results.

The company’s earnings track record has been mixed so far, having delivered a positive surprise twice in the trailing four quarters while missing the same once and delivering in-line results in another quarter, the average beat being 77.24%. In the last reported quarter, Catalyst came up with a positive surprise of 233.33%.

Shares of Catalyst have skyrocketed 193.8% year to date compared with the industry’s increase of 1.5%.

Let’s see how things are shaping up for the upcoming quarterly results.

Factors to Consider

Catalyst’s only marketed drug Firdapse was launched in the United States in January 2019 after receiving the FDA approval in November 2018. The drug was approved for the treatment of Lambert-Eaton myasthenic syndrome (LEMS) in adults. Firdapse became the first FDA approved treatment for LEMS.

Firdapse was off to a solid start soon after its launch and recorded sales of $28.8 million in the second quarter of 2019, reflecting 132.3% growth sequentially. In the same period, revenues were entirely drawn from Firdapse. The drug is likely to have performed well and contributed to significant revenues in the third quarter as well.

Per the company, Firdapse is prescribed to 409 LEMS patients as of Jun 30, 2019. It remains to be seen whether the number of patients active on Firdapse went up in the third quarter in the impending results.

Update on Firdapse Studies

Meanwhile, Catalyst is working on developing Firdapse for additional indications. The company is currently conducting phase III studies on the drug for treating congenital myasthenic syndromes (CMS) and anti-MuSK-antibody positive myasthenia gravis (MuSK-MG). It expects to complete enrollment in the MuSK-MG study during the second half of 2019 and report top-line results in the first half of 2020.

The company expects to report top-line results from the phase III CMS study in the second half of 2019.

Catalyst is also conducting a proof-of-concept study, evaluating Firdapse as a symptomatic treatment for patients with SMA type III. Top-line results are expected in the first half of 2020.

Investors will be keen to get an update on all these studies during the upcoming earnings call as a potential label expansion will boost the drug’s sales in the future quarters.

Earnings Whispers

Our proven model does not conclusively predict an earnings beat for Catalyst this season. The combination of a positive Earnings ESP and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), 2 (Buy) or 3 (Hold) increases the odds of an earnings beat. But this is not the case here. You can uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they're reported with our Earnings ESP Filter.

Earnings ESP: Catalyst has an Earnings ESP of 0.00% as both the Zacks Consensus Estimate and the Most Accurate Estimate are pegged at 11 cents per share.

Zacks Rank: Catalyst carries a Zacks Rank #2, which increases the predictive power of ESP. However, the 0.00% ESP makes surprise prediction difficult.

Catalyst Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise

Catalyst Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise

Catalyst Pharmaceuticals, Inc. price-eps-surprise | Catalyst Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Quote

Stocks That Warrant a Look

Here are a few healthcare stocks worth considering as our model shows that these have the right mix of elements to beat estimates this time around.

Alnylam Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ALNY has an Earnings ESP of +0.28% and a Zacks Rank of 2. The company is scheduled to release results on Oct 31.You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Jazz Pharmaceuticals PLC JAZZ has an Earnings ESP of +1.70% and is Zacks #2 Ranked. The company is scheduled to release results on Nov 5.

Portola Pharmaceuticals, Inc. PTLA has an Earnings ESP of +6.33% and a Zacks Rank of 1. The company is scheduled to release results on Nov 5.

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