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TheStreet Open House

5 Stocks Poised for Big Breakouts

Nektar Therapeutics

A stock in the biotechnology and drugs complex that's trading within range of triggering a near-term breakout trade is Nektar Therapeutics (NKTR), which is developing a pipeline of drug candidates that utilize its PEGylation and advanced polymer conjugate technology platforms.

If you look at the chart for Nektar Therapeutics, you'll see that this stock made a monster move higher from its June low of $6.40 a share to its July high of $9.94 a share. Following that explosive move higher, shares of NKTR pulled back and entered a sideways trading pattern between $7.86 and $8.73 a share. Traders should now watch NKTR for a high-volume move outside of that sideways trading pattern, since that could trigger a powerful breakout trade.

>>22 Biopharma Stocks With Breakout Potential in 2012

Market players should now look for long-biased trades in NKTR if it can manage to trigger a move above some near-term overhead resistance at $8.73 a share with high volume. Look for a sustained move or close above $8.73 a share with volume that hits near or above its three-month average action of 926,631 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then NKTR could easily tag or take out its July high of $9.94 a share.

One could look to buy NKTR off weakness and anticipate that breakout, with a stop that sits just below $7.86 a share. Or, one could buy off strength once NKTR clears $8.73 with high volume, and then use a stop just below its 50-day at $8.45 or below $8 a share.

Keep in mind that NKTR is a favorite target of the short-sellers. The current short interest as a percentage of the float for NKTR is very high at 15.5%. If that breakout triggers soon, then we could see a large short squeeze develop, so keep NKTR on your breakout trading radar.

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