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Happy Day for Arena Bulls, Bears as Belviq Launch Finally Arrives

Adam Feuerstein

05/07/13 - 11:53 AM EDT

SAN DIEGO ( TheStreet) -- Areniacs rejoice! The DEA has finally published the rule establishing Arena Pharmaceuticals' (ARNA) weight-loss pill Belviq as a Schedule IV drug and allowing the commercial launch to begin in 30 days.

Arena shorts rejoice! You've been waiting more than 10 months for Arena and partner Eisai to finally start posting disappointing sales of Belviq.

Today is a happy day for everyone.

Well, not everyone. Some of the Areniacs are pissed off at DEA for taking so long to decide on Belviq's abuse potential.

Too funny.

Back to serious matters, while Arena hasn't yet commented publicly on the final DEA schedulings, the company has said previously that Belviq is ready to launch. DEA did not grant Arena's request to waive the mandatory 30-day waiting period, so assume Belviq marketing will begin in early June. Once launched, Belviq will compete against Vivus' (VVUS) weight-loss pill Qsymia, which has posted weak sales to date.

DEA's decision to place Belviq in the Schedule IV, or "low potential for abuse" category was expected.

Arena shares were up 44 cents, or 6%, to $7.96 in early Tuesday trading.


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