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Four Stellar Stocks to Beat the Biotech Slump

Biotech stocks are struggling this year, but investors should not throw in the towel on Amgen, Gilead, bluebird and Bellicum

The iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF (IBB) - Get Report is down 13% thus far in 2016, but investors should not throw in the towel on biotech stars Amgen (AMGN) - Get Report , Gilead (GILD) - Get Report , bluebird (BLUE) - Get Report and Bellicum (BLCM) - Get Report , said Brad Loncar, CEO of Loncar Investments. Shares of Amgen are up 5.4% thus far in 2016, but fell this week after its Phase III Clarion trial failed to meet its primary endpoint. Gilead shares have dropped 20% so far in 2016. The stock was hit this week after Leerink reduced its rating on the stock to MARKET PERFORM from OUTPERFORM. Bluebird bio shares are up a healthy 16% year-to-date, but have soared 43% in the past month as the immunotherapy specialist is rumored to be a target for Japanese drug maker Takeda Pharmaceutical (TKPYY) . Similarly, Loncar expects Bellicum Pharmaceuticals, another immunotherapy outfit, to have a lot to say at the ASH Conference. Bellicum has seen its shares recover to $20 from less than $8 this past March.

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