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TheStreet Open House

3 Health Care Stocks Spiking on Big Volume

Nektar Therapeutics

Nektar Therapeutics ( NKTR) is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing a pipeline of drug candidates that utilize its PEGylation and polymer conjugate technology platforms, which are designed to improve the benefits of drugs for patients. This stock closed up 11.6% at $10.95 on Wednesday.

Wednesday's Volume: 2.73 million
Average Volume: 878,311
Volume % Change: 202%

Shares of NKTR ripped higher on Wednesday after the company reported positive top-line results for experimental drug NKTR-181 to treat chronic pain.

>>5 Buy Signals From the Health Care Sector

From a technical perspective, NKTR skyrocketed higher back above its 50-day moving average of $10.06 with heavy upside volume. This move is quickly pushing shares of NKTR within range of triggering a major breakout trade, which will hit if NKTR manages to take out some near-term overhead resistance levels at $10.91 to $11.34. NKTR hit an intraday high of $11.07 on Wednesday, and volume was well above its three-month average action of 878,311 shares.

Traders should now look for long-biased trades in NKTR as long as it's trending above its 50-day at $10.06 and then once it sustains a move or close above those breakout levels with volume that hits near or above 878,311 shares. If that breakout triggers soon, then NKTR will set up to enter new 52-week-high territory above $11.34, which is bullish technical price action. Some possible upside targets off that breakout are $13 to $14.


Healthways ( HWAY) provides well-being improvement solutions that help people improve their physical, emotional and social well-being, thereby improving their health and productivity and reducing their health-related costs. This stock closed up 8.3% to $15.18 on Wednesday.

Wednesday's Volume: 391,000
Average Volume: 175,280
Volume % Change: 118%

Shares of HWAY ripped higher on Wednesday after William Blair analyst Ryan Daniels said the company is emerging as a strong growth story again.

>>5 Stocks Insiders Love Right Now

From a technical perspective, HWAY soared higher here right off some near-term support at $14 with heavy upside volume. This move briefly pushed shares of HWAY into breakout territory, since the stock flirted with its previous 52-week high at $15.24 with high volume. At last check, HWAY hit an intraday high of $15.49 and volume was well above its three-month average action of 175,280 shares.

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