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Wider 2Q Loss at ArQule

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ArQule, Inc. (ARQL - Free Report) reported a loss of 11 cents per share in the second quarter of 2013, wider than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of a loss of 10 cents per share. The company had reported a loss of a penny in the year-ago quarter.

Revenues plummeted 62.5% to $4.4 million in the second quarter of 2013 and were marginally short of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $5 million.

Quarter in Detail

The decline in ArQule’s quarterly revenues was primarily due to the reduction of $4.9 million of revenues from the company’s research collaboration with Daiichi Sankyo that ended in Nov 2012 and $2.3 million from the tivantinib program with the latter.

Research and development expenses were $8.1 million, down 12.8% from the year-ago quarter mainly due to lower outsourced clinical and product development costs related to tivantinib and other pipeline programs along with lower labor related costs.

General and administrative expenses declined 9.0% to $3.2 million.

2013 Outlook Reiterated

ArQule continues to expect revenues between $12 million and $15 million in 2013. The Zacks Consensus Estimate currently stands at $18 million. ArQule anticipates net loss per share between 45 cents and 50 cents in 2013.  The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2013 hints at a loss of 41 cents.

Concurrent with second-quarter results, ArQule announced a workforce reduction of approximately 25 positions in order to accumulate cash and sustain its business into 2016, independently fund its clinical trials and effectively deploy core discovery capabilities.

Pipeline Update

ArQule will continue to focus on developing its oncology candidate, tivantinib (ARQ 197), which has now entered into phase III with the initiation of the METIV-HCC (MET-high patients with tivantinib in second-line hepatocellular carcinoma).

Initiated in early 2013, the trial is evaluating previously treated patients with MET-high inoperable HCC (liver cancer) who will receive tivantinib as a single agent or placebo. The company enrolled its first patient for this trial in the first quarter of 2013 and expects to complete full enrolment by mid 2015.

ArQule currently carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Right now, Cadence Pharmaceuticals , Auxilium Pharmaceuticals Inc. , and Avanir Pharmaceuticals, Inc. look well placed, each with a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

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