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Nektar Went From S&P 500 Darling to Reject in 18 Months

Bailey Lipschultz

(Bloomberg) -- For Nektar Therapeutics, life comes at you fast.

The once high-flying biotech company that rode data and deal speculation to become the best performer in S&P 500 will see its time in the Index come to an end next week. The short stint on one of the most closely watched indexes will have lasted just over 18 months -- a period which saw Nektar shed over 80% of its value following a more than 500% boom.

The news comes less than 12 hours after disappointing breast cancer data sent shares to their worst session since Aug. 12 when a manufacturing snafu raised concern about its cancer drug. The stock has lost more than 70% of its value in the last year to make it the index’s worst performer, beating battered companies like DXC Technology Co., Abiomed Inc., and Macy’s Inc for the title.

Wall Street’s verdict on the company is currently mixed with eight analysts recommending the shares to investors, while six rate the drugmaker as a hold. No analysts tracked by Bloomberg advise selling the stock. The average 12-month price target of $43 implies more than 140% upside from Thursday’s close at $17.56.

To contact the reporter on this story: Bailey Lipschultz in New York at blipschultz@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Catherine Larkin at clarkin4@bloomberg.net, Morwenna Coniam

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