“$2 Trillion or Not?…Was The Question” – Vista’s Daily – March 25, 2020

By John F. Heerdink, Jr.

The markets got excited again over the possibility of a $2 trillion stimulus package coming to the economic rescue after it was blessed by the Senate last night and they moved up as much as 5% in early trading, however, doubt and worry over potential delays from the house showed up and the markets retreated into the close.  At the close of trading, the S&P 500 closed up +1.15% as 8 of the eleven sectors moved higher with energy & industrials leading the way. Oil prices moved up +2.5% to $24.53/bbl and global growth prospects again were believed to be a bit less certain with the promise that the US is targeting April 12th/Easter to begin getting back to work. The Dow also added +2.39% as Boeing (BA) surged +24.32% on stimulus-related bailout terms, Nike (NKE) regained its wings after exceeding analyst expectations and jumped +9.24% (digital sales in Greater China increased more than 30% while brick and mortar retail sales were impacted by temporary store closures related to COVID-19) & Chevron (CVX) added another +4.09%. The Nasdaq lost -.45% & the Russell 2000 gained +1.26%. 

The FAANG stocks closed down across the board as Facebook (FB) closed at $156.21/share, dropping -2.96% after recoginizing that its ad business is suffering, Amazon (AMZN) closed at $1,885.84/share, down by -2.8%, Apple (AAPL) closed at $245.52/share dropping -.55%, Netflix (NFLX) cooled off again dropping -4.18% closing $342.39/share, & Alphabet (GOOG) closed at $1,102.49/share, -2.82%.

U.S. Treasury yields moved in opposite directions today. The 2-yr yield dropped by 7 basis points to .30% & the 10-yr yield moved higher by 4 basis points to .86%. The U.S. Dollar Index weakened -1.2% to 100.86, gold prices dropped to $1,642/oz, and silver prices rose to $14.69/oz.

The February durable goods orders report showed and rise of +1.2% and when you exclude transportation, durable goods orders dropped by -.6%. The FHFA Housing Price Index report showed a rise by +.3% in March while the weekly MBA Mortgage Applications Index decreased by -29.4%.

Three bright spots in our portfolio today came from the healthcare sector. Breast cancer-focused biotech Atossa Therapeutics (ATOS) rose +9.6% as they wait to meet with the U.S. FDA on April 30, 2020. The objective of this meeting is to discuss the clinical development of oral Endoxifen to reduce mammographic breast density (MBD). Developers of INVOcell, a patented and FDA cleared medical device used in the treatment of infertility that enables egg fertilization and early embryo development to take place in the woman’s body, INVO Bioscience (INVO), rose +6.96%. Neubase Therapeutics (NBSE), a biotechnology company developing next-generation antisense therapies using its scalable PATrOL™ platform to address genetic diseases, rose +11.9% today.

Markets

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Big Movers

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Bond Markets & US Dollar

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Economic Reports

On Monday, nothing of significance was reported.

On Tuesday, we received the New Home Sales Report for February that confirmed that it dropped -4.4% month/month in February to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 765k units.

On Wednesday, we received the February durable goods orders report which showed a rise of +1.2% and when you exclude transportation, durable goods orders dropped by -.6%. The FHFA Housing Price Index report showed a rise by +.3% in March while the weekly MBA Mortgage Applications Index decreased by -29.4%.

Agriculture & Energy

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Biotech & Healthcare

Maxim Group’s Sell-side Biotech Analyst Jason McCarthy recently issued an update report upgrading Atossa Therapeutics,  Inc. (NASDAQ: ATOS), a clinical-stage pharmaceutical company developing novel therapeutics and delivery methods to treat breast cancer and other breast conditions, to a Buy with a $4/share 12-month price target, stating that the company is “ready to advance its modified-release oral tablet of endoxifen to a P2 study for the treatment of mammographic breast density (MBD).”

Atossa announced that it will meet with the U.S. FDA on April 30, 2020. The objective of this meeting is to discuss the clinical development of oral Endoxifen to reduce mammographic breast density (MBD). tossa further stated that as envisioned, a short course of oral Endoxifen may provide another option for women with high MBD. Atossa’s offices are located in Seattle, Washington and ongoing or planned clinical trials of Atossa’s Endoxifen are located in Australia and Sweden. Despite the well-publicized impacts of the current COVID-19 outbreak, Atossa’s operations, including clinical studies and the supply of Endoxifen, have not been negatively impacted. Sufficient quantities of the active pharmaceutical ingredient, Endoxifen, for the currently ongoing and planned clinical trials have been previously manufactured and are in secure storage. Management instituted a temporary policy of working from home, which has been in place since February 26, 2020, and of limited business travel. These policies remain in effect as of today. Finally, the Company has not been notified of any employee illness, as would be required by policy.

Atossa Therapeutics, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATOS) also announced in March that it has filed with the Swedish Medical Product Agency and the Institutional Review Board to initiate a Phase 2 study of its oral Endoxifen for the reduction of mammographic breast density (MBD). MBD is an emerging public health issue affecting more than 10 million women in the United States. Studies conducted by others have shown that MBD increases the risk of developing breast cancer, and reducing MBD can reduce the incidence of breast cancer. Atossa’s Chairman, and CEO, Steven Quay stated the following,

“This is an important milestone in the development of our oral Endoxifen product. Regulatory approval is necessary to commence the Phase 2 randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled study in Stockholm, which will include approximately 1,000 pre-menopausal women with MBD who will receive daily doses of Endoxifen or placebo for six months. We expect the Medical Product Authority will respond within 30 days and that the IRB approval will follow in the second quarter.”

Atossa has established both primary and secondary sources of manufacturing for the clinical supply of its oral Endoxifen capsules. With over three years of experience manufacturing and supplying the oral Endoxifen capsules for its completed clinical studies, Atossa believes adequate drug supply will be available to support this Phase 2 study. The primary objective of the study is to determine if breast density changes compared to placebo and among different doses, with secondary endpoints to assess and characterize safety and tolerability. South General Hospital in Stockholm will be conducting this study at multiple sites, after having recently completed the company’s Phase 2 study of its topical form of Endoxifen. The study is being led by principal investigator Per Hall, M.D., Ph.D., Head of the Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics at Karolinska Institutet.

 

 

 

INVO Bioscience (INVO) has made a number of moves to build out its organization while focusing its efforts to increase access to its INVOcell procedure globally. INVO’s lead product, the INVOcell®, is a patented medical device used in infertility treatment and is considered an Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). ART includes all fertility treatments in which both eggs and embryos are handled outside of the body. In general, ART procedures involve removing mature eggs from a woman’s ovaries using a needle, combining the eggs with sperm in the laboratory, and returning the embryos to the woman’s body or donating them to another woman. The main type of ART is in vitro fertilization (IVF). INVO’s INVOcell is the first Intravaginal Culture (IVC) system in the world used for the natural in vivo incubation of eggs and sperm during fertilization and early embryo development, as an alternative to traditional In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) and Intrauterine Insemination (IUI). INVO’s mission is to increase access to care and expand fertility treatment across the globe with a goal to lower the cost of care and increase the availability of care. The Company believes the worldwide fertility treatment market to be severely underserved with only 1% to 2% of the estimated 150 million infertile couples being treated. Since January 2019, INVO Bioscience has signed commercialization agreements in the United States, as well as parts of Africa, Eurasia for the INVOcell device. On January 16, 2020, INVO and Medesole, a leading supplier of healthcare products in India and the Middle East, announced the signing of a joint venture to operate dedicated INVOcell clinics in India. According to the Indian Society of Assisted Reproduction, between 10% and 14% of Indians struggle with their fertility. In 2015, 27.5 million couples in India seeking children experienced difficulty conceiving. In urban areas, one out of six couples is impacted. According to market research, the India IVF market is expected to reach $1.45 billion by 2026, a 14.7% increase from 2019. This double-digit growth of infertility in India has made it a personal, as well as public health issue. Social stigma apart, infertility leads to tremendous financial and emotional stress for couples with the cost being a limiting factor for many couples who want to opt for this procedure. 

Recently,  INVO announced that Yve Lyppens has been appointed Director of Business Development Asia Pacific. Yve Lyppens comes to INVO Bioscience with more than a decade of experience in sales and distribution management. From 2016 to the present, he served as Asia Pacific Sales Director for Biomedic Hong Kong Ltd., a medical device distributor in Mainland China. Prior to that, from 2011 to 2016, Mr. Lyppens served as a Director, Shareholder and Sales Manager at F Care Systems Hong Kong Ltd., a developer, and exporter of medical aesthetics equipment. Based in Hong Kong, Mr. Lyppens will work with the company’s COO and VP of Business Development, Michael Campbell, in developing the Company’s sales and distribution network throughout Asia. He will be responsible for developing and implementing a regional business strategy to expand the companies INVO solution through joint venture partnerships and/or distribution relationships. He will also be identifying and solving all potential issues working with cross-functional development teams. He will be attending industry symposiums, seminars and training sessions necessary to promote the technology. 

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Consumer Goods & Trends

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Financials & Fintech

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Materials & Natural Resources

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Technology & Beyond

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Investing & Inspiration

 

 

I believe the returns on investment in the poor are just as exciting as successes achieved in the business arena, and they are even more meaningful!” -Bill Gates

“Every portfolio benefits from bonds; they provide a cushion when the stock market hits a rough patch. But avoiding stocks completely could mean your investment won’t grow any faster than the rate of inflation.” – Suze Orman

“The tax on capital gains directly affects investment decisions, the mobility, and flow of risk capital… the ease or difficulty experienced by new ventures in obtaining capital, and thereby the strength and potential for growth in the economy.” – John F. Kennedy

“If all the economists were laid end to end, they’d never reach a conclusion.
-George Bernard Shaw

“The riskiest thing we can do is just maintain the status quo.
I get up at 4:30 in the morning, seven days a week, no matter where I am in the world. I think it is important for people who are given leadership roles to assume that role immediately. What I’ve really learned over time is that optimism is a very, very important part of leadership.” Bob Iger, Ceo of Disney

“There are old traders and there are bold traders, but there are very few old, bold traders.”-Ed Seykota

“Let this scenario play out on its own, in its own fashion. As you watch it unfold, you will soon be grateful that you choose the peaceful path. Remember — those who live by the sword, die by the sword.”

“As long as you enjoy investing, you’ll be willing to do the homework and stay in the game.” -Jim Cramer

“I rarely think the market is right. I believe non-dividend stocks aren’t much more than baseball cards. They are worth what you can convince someone to pay for it.” -Mark Cuban

Michael Marcus taught me one other thing that is absolutely critical: You have to be willing to make mistakes regularly; there is nothing wrong with it. Michael taught me about making your best judgment, being wrong, making your next best judgment, being wrong, making your third best judgment, and then doubling your money.” -Bruce Kovner

“The policy of being too cautious is the greatest risk of all.” -Jawaharlal Nehru

“The only true test of whether a stock is “cheap” or “high” is not its current price in relation to some former price, no matter how accustomed we may have become to that former price, but whether the company’s fundamentals are significantly more or less favorable than the current financial-community appraisal of that stock.” -Philip Fisher

“I learned to avoid trying to catch up or double up to recoup losses. I also learned that a certain amount of loss will affect your judgment, so you have to put some time between that loss and the next trade.” -Richard Dennis

“The four most dangerous words in investing are: ‘this time it’s different.” -Sir John Templeton

“Money doesn’t make you happy. I now have $50 million but I was just as happy when I had $48 million.” -Arnold Schwarzenegger

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Tomorrow

Tomorrow’s significant economic data report schedule will include the following:

  • The weekly Initial and Continuing Claims report
  • The third estimate for Q4 GDP
  • The Advance reports for International Trade in Goods, Retail Inventories, and Wholesale Inventories for February

Videos

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