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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights Absci Axcella Health, Freeline Therapeutics Holdings, DICE Therapeutics and Pliant Therapeutics

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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – August 10, 2022 – Zacks.com announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include: Absci Corp. (ABSI - Free Report) Axcella Health (AXLA - Free Report) , Freeline Therapeutics Holdings (FRLN - Free Report) , DICE Therapeutics (DICE - Free Report) , Pliant Therapeutics (PLRX - Free Report) .

Here are highlights from Tuesday’s Analyst Blog:

5 Biotech Stocks Likely to Outpace Q2 Earnings Estimates

t has been a better-than-expected earnings season for the drug and biotech sector. Most companies beat consensus EPS and revenue estimates. Though a few drug/biotech companies did lower their financial guidance, most of them either maintained or raised their guidance for the year. There are some smaller biotechs, which are yet to report in this last week of the earnings season.

Per the Zacks classification, the pharma/biotech industry comes under the broader Medical sector, which comprises pharma/biotech as well as medical device companies.

Per the Earnings Trends report, as of Jul 27, 25% of the Medical sector companies, constituting nearly 41.2% of the sector's market capitalization, reported earnings. While 85.7% of the companies beat on earnings, 78.6% surpassed revenue estimates. Earnings increased 5.1% year over year, while revenues rose 10.7%.

Overall, second-quarter earnings of the Medical sector are expected to rise 1.1%, while revenues are projected to increase 7.9%.

Zeroing in on Winners

Here we have highlighted five biotech companies — Absci Corp., Axcella Health, Freeline Therapeutics Holding, DICE Therapeutic, Pliant Therapeutics — that are expected to deliver a beat in their upcoming quarterly results.

Earnings ESP is our proprietary methodology for determining the stocks that have the best chance to deliver an earnings surprise. Earnings ESP shows the percentage difference between the Most Accurate Estimate and the Zacks Consensus Estimate.

According to the Zacks model, the combination of a positive Earnings ESP and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), 2 (Buy) or 3 (Hold) increases the odds of an earnings beat. The selection can be done with the help of the Zacks Stock Screener.

Our research shows that for stocks with this combination, the chance of an earnings surprise is as high as 70%. You can uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they're reported with our Earnings ESP Filter.

5 Drug/Biotech Stocks That Match the Criteria

Absci Corporation

This AI-powered synthetic biology company has an Earnings ESP of +1.59% and a Zacks Rank of 3. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the second quarter is pegged at a loss of 32 cents per share. Absci is expected to release results later this month.

Angion Biomedica missed estimates in three of the last four quarters while beating in one, with the average negative surprise being 15.20%

You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here

Axcella Health

A clinical-stage biotech, Axcella Health makes novel multifactorial interventions to support health and address dysregulated metabolism. Axcella Health has an Earnings ESP of +1.69% and a Zacks Rank of 3. The Zacks Consensus for the second quarter is pegged at a loss of 36 cents per share.

Axcella Health beat estimates in one of the last four quarters while missing in two and delivering in-line results in one. The company's four-quarter average negative earnings surprise is 4.79%. The company should release results this month.

Freeline Therapeutics

This clinical-stage biotechnology company makes AAV-based gene therapy targeting the liver. Freeline Therapeutics has an Earnings ESP of +21.50% and a Zacks Rank of #2. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the second quarter is pegged at a loss of 54 cents per share.

Freeline Therapeutics missed estimates in three of the last four quarters while beating in one with the average negative earnings surprise being 11.72%.

DICE Therapeutics

This biotech makes novel oral therapeutic candidates to treat chronic diseases in immunology and other therapeutic areas. DICE Therapeutics has an Earnings ESP of +0.90% and a Zacks Rank of 3. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the second quarter is pegged at a loss of 56 cents per share.

DICE Therapeutics' average two-quarter negative earnings surprise is 163.28%.

Pliant Therapeutics

Pliant Therapeutics is a clinical biotech focused on developing novel therapies for the treatment of fibrosis. The company has an Earnings ESP of +0.98% and a Zacks Rank #2. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the second quarter is pegged at a loss of 82 cents per share.

Pliant Therapeutics beat estimates in one of the last four quarters while missing in two and delivering in-line results in one. The company's average earnings surprise is 0.90%. The company should release results this month.

Stay on top of upcoming earnings announcements with the Zacks Earnings Calendar.

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Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Inherent in any investment is the potential for loss. This material is being provided for informational purposes only and nothing herein constitutes investment, legal, accounting or tax advice, or a recommendation to buy, sell or hold a security. No recommendation or advice is being given as to whether any investment is suitable for a particular investor. It should not be assumed that any investments in securities, companies, sectors or markets identified and described were or will be profitable. All information is current as of the date of herein and is subject to change without notice. Any views or opinions expressed may not reflect those of the firm as a whole. Zacks Investment Research does not engage in investment banking, market making or asset management activities of any securities. These returns are from hypothetical portfolios consisting of stocks with Zacks Rank = 1 that were rebalanced monthly with zero transaction costs. These are not the returns of actual portfolios of stocks. The S&P 500 is an unmanaged index. Visit https://www.zacks.com/performance for information about the performance numbers displayed in this press release.

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