Shares of Matria Healthcare ( MATR) were among the worst-performing health-related stocks Thursday, plunging 19% after the health-services company slashed its 2006 earnings and revenue outlook. The company now sees full-year earnings from continuing operations of $1.10 to $1.17 a share, down from an earlier prediction of $1.35 to $1.50 a share. The guidance excludes stock-based compensation costs of 25 cents to 30 cents a share. The company now sees revenue of $337 million to $341 million, down from an earlier view of $360 million to $370 million. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call project earnings of $1.10 a share, including stock-based compensation costs, and revenue of $360.7 million. "The market's reaction to our acquisition of CorSolutions appears to be a general delay in awarding new employer business to Matria," the company said. "Because our acquisition of CorSolutions is currently the largest transaction of this nature to occur in the disease management market, consultants and prospective clients are being cautious." Matria continues to see second-quarter earnings from continuing operations of 23 cents to 26 cents a share, with revenue of $82 million to $84 million. Analysts project earnings of 19 cents a share, including 7 cents in compensation costs, on revenue of $84 million. Shares were trading down $5.20 to $22.16. Advanced Medical Optics ( EYE) rose 2% after the eye-care products company raised its 2006 earnings guidance and backed its revenue forecast. The company now sees earnings of $2.03 to $2.19 a share, up from an earlier view of $2 to $2.15 a share. Analysts project earnings of $2.03 a share. Advanced Medical said the new outlook reflects its stock buyback, a note offering and the purchase of outstanding debt. The company continues to see revenue of $1.02 billion to $1.04 billion, bracketing analysts' mean estimate of $1.03 billion. For 2007, the company now sees earnings of at least $2.60 a share, up from a previous forecast that called for earnings of at least $2.45 a share. The company predicts revenue of $1.1 billion to $1.12 billion. Analysts project 2007 earnings of $2.50 a share on revenue of $1.1 billion. Shares were trading up 74 cents to $46.59.
Shares of ICOS ( ICOS) rose 5% after the drugmaker said that Lilly ICOS, its joint venture with Eli Lilly ( LLY), submitted a filing to the European Medicines Agency for approval of once-a-day dosing of Cialis, an erectile dysfunction treatment. The joint venture plans to make similar filings in the U.S. and Canada later in 2006. If the drug is approved, the first product launches could take place in late 2007, ICOS said. Looking ahead, ICOS sees 2007 earnings of $35 million to $45 million, or 53 cents to 68 cents a share. For 2008, the company sees earnings of $85 million to $100 million or $1.23 to $1.45 a share. Analysts project 2007 earnings of 30 cents a share and 2008 earnings of 69 cents a share. In May, the company said that its loss for 2006 would be at the low end of 8 cents to 39 cents a share. Analysts project a 2006 loss of 5 cents a share. ICOS shares were up 85 cents to $20.97. Cortex Pharmaceuticals ( COR) jumped 10% after the drugmaker said it provided a preclinical research plan to the Food and Drug Administration that could lead the agency to remove the clinical hold that it put on Ampakine CX717 in early April. "We currently are on schedule with the timelines proposed for conducting the additional preclinical studies," Cortex said. "In fact, Cortex has already completed the review of the relevant histological materials from a previously completed preclinical toxicology study, which was part of the FDA request to Cortex." The company says that it plans to issue all of the data to the FDA in September. "If the data obtained from the acute high dose toxicology studies are assessed positively by the FDA, we believe the FDA will remove CX717 from the current clinical hold," Cortex concluded. CX717 is being developed to treat cognitive dysfunction, which can arise from neuropsychiatric conditions such as Alzheimer's disease, ADHD, and sleep disorders. Shares were trading at $3.28, up 31 cents. Other health care volume movers included Pfizer ( PFE), down 44 cents to $23.47; Merck ( MRK), up 5 cents to $34.01; Elan ( ELN), down 92 cents to $15.08; Johnson & Johnson ( JNJ), up 41 cents to $61.58; Amgen ( AMGN), up 67 cents to $67.88; Boston Scientific ( BSX), down 31 cents to $19.91; Genentech ( DNA), down 45 cents to $77.65; UnitedHealth Group ( UNH), down 17 cents to $46.11; Teva Pharmaceutical ( TEVA), down 57 cents to $36.51; and Bristol-Myers Squibb ( BMY), up 27 cents to $25.17.