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Investors Business Daily
Investors Business Daily

Highly Rated Axsome Surges On Earnings Beat. And Here's Why BioXcel Reversed.

Axsome Therapeutics and BioXcel Therapeutics issued divergent earnings reports Monday. BTAI stock reversed an earlier dive and rose alongside AXSM stock.

Axsome sells a new treatment for depression called Auvelity. BioXcel's Igalmi is a new treatment for agitation associated with schizophrenia and bipolar disorders. In the first quarter, Auvelity revenue easily topped forecasts, while Igalmi delivered half what Wall Street projected.

On today's stock market, AXSM stock surged 5.4%, closing at 77.73. Axsome shares briefly topped a buy point at 82.10 out of a consolidation, according to BTAI stock popped 13.6% and ended the regular session at 26.33. That reversed a double-digit premarket dive for BioXcel shares.

Mizuho Securities analyst Graig Suvannavejh noted a medical professional must administer Igalmi, a tablet that dissolves under the tongue. BioXcel hopes Igalmi will eventually gain approval as an at-home treatment for patients with agitation due to schizophrenia or bipolar disorders.

"Sales at this stage of Igalmi's inpatient launch don't particularly matter," Suvannavejh said in a report to clients. "Recall that management has been consistent in its commentary that the U.S. commercial launch of Igalmi should be expected to be slow for the first nine to 12 months, given the procedural steps needed for hospital-based drugs like Igalmi to get on hospital formularies."

AXSM Stock; Auvelity, Sunosi Sales Mixed

Overall, Axsome reported $28.6 million in first-quarter sales of its drugs, Auvelity and a narcolepsy treatment called Sunosi. Auvelity generated $15.7 million in sales, well above calls for $9.8 million to $10 million, Mizuho's Suvannavejh said.

Sunosi sales, though, lagged at $12.9 million vs. expectations for $17.2 million to $18.5 million. This was impacted by a $3.3 million inventory charge, which was anticipated, he said.

Axsome also reported an upfront payment of $65.7 million from privately held Pharmanovia related to a license agreement and $300,000 in royalties.

Bullishly for AXSM stock, losses came in well below expectations at 26 cents per share vs. forecasts for a $1.30 per-share loss, according to FactSet.

Suvannavejh kept his buy rating and 84 price target on Axsome stock.

BTAI Stock: Igalmi, Losses Miss

Meanwhile, BioXcel's Igalmi brought in $206,000 in revenue. The consensus of analysts polled by FactSet was $400,000 in sales. Suvannavejh earlier lowered his expectations to $337,000 to $369,000 in sales.

BioXcel also reported a per-share loss of $1.84, deeper than projections for losses between $1.50 to $1.71 per share, Suvannavejh said.

Initially, BTAI stock toppled on the report, but shares have rebounded in late morning action.

Both biotech stocks are high performers, according to IBD Digital.

AXSM stock has a Relative Strength Rating of 97, putting its 12-month performance in the top 3% of all stocks. BTAI stock has an RS Rating of 96.

Follow Allison Gatlin on Twitter at @IBD_AGatlin.

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