Trade-Ideas LLC identified

Portola Pharmaceuticals

(

PTLA

) as a weak on high relative volume candidate. In addition to specific proprietary factors, Trade-Ideas identified Portola Pharmaceuticals as such a stock due to the following factors:

  • PTLA has an average dollar-volume (as measured by average daily share volume multiplied by share price) of $40.3 million.
  • PTLA has traded 844,814 shares today.
  • PTLA is trading at 11.70 times the normal volume for the stock at this time of day.
  • PTLA is trading at a new low 8.09% below yesterday's close.

'Weak on High Relative Volume' stocks are worth watching because major volume moves tend to indicate underlying activity such as material stock news, analyst downgrades, insider selling, selling from 'superinvestors,' or that hedge funds and traders are piling out of a stock ahead of a catalyst. Regardless of the impetus behind the price and volume action, when a stock moves with strength and volume it can indicate the start of a new trend on which early investors can capitalize (or avoid losses by trimming weak positions). In the event of a well-timed trading opportunity, combining technical indicators with fundamental trends and a disciplined trading methodology should help you take the first steps towards investment success.

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More details on PTLA:

Portola Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company, develops and commercializes therapeutics for patients in the areas of thrombosis, other hematologic disorders, and inflammation. Currently there are 3 analysts that rate Portola Pharmaceuticals a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and none rate it a hold.

The average volume for Portola Pharmaceuticals has been 1.0 million shares per day over the past 30 days. Portola has a market cap of $1.1 billion and is part of the health care sector and drugs industry. The stock has a beta of 0.64 and a short float of 9.6% with 1.30 days to cover. Shares are down 60.6% year-to-date as of the close of trading on Thursday.

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TheStreetRatings.com

Analysis:

TheStreet Quant Ratings

rates Portola Pharmaceuticals as a

sell

. The company's weaknesses can be seen in multiple areas, such as its feeble growth in its earnings per share, deteriorating net income, disappointing return on equity, weak operating cash flow and generally disappointing historical performance in the stock itself.

Highlights from the ratings report include:

  • PORTOLA PHARMACEUTICALS INC's earnings per share declined by 50.0% in the most recent quarter compared to the same quarter a year ago. Earnings per share have declined over the last two years. We anticipate that this should continue in the coming year. During the past fiscal year, PORTOLA PHARMACEUTICALS INC reported poor results of -$4.35 versus -$3.19 in the prior year. For the next year, the market is expecting a contraction of 6.5% in earnings (-$4.63 versus -$4.35).
  • The company, on the basis of change in net income from the same quarter one year ago, has significantly underperformed when compared to that of the S&P 500 and the Biotechnology industry. The net income has significantly decreased by 68.4% when compared to the same quarter one year ago, falling from -$39.26 million to -$66.11 million.
  • Return on equity has greatly decreased when compared to its ROE from the same quarter one year prior. This is a signal of major weakness within the corporation. Compared to other companies in the Biotechnology industry and the overall market, PORTOLA PHARMACEUTICALS INC's return on equity significantly trails that of both the industry average and the S&P 500.
  • Net operating cash flow has decreased to -$57.19 million or 29.79% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, when comparing to the industry average, the firm's growth rate is much lower.
  • Despite any intermediate fluctuations, we have only bad news to report on this stock's performance over the last year: it has tumbled by 27.57%, worse than the S&P 500's performance. Consistent with the plunge in the stock price, the company's earnings per share are down 50.00% compared to the year-earlier quarter. Naturally, the overall market trend is bound to be a significant factor. However, in one sense, the stock's sharp decline last year is a positive for future investors, making it cheaper (in proportion to its earnings over the past year) than most other stocks in its industry. But due to other concerns, we feel the stock is still not a good buy right now.

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