January 2, 2019 / 4:01 PM / a year ago

BUZZ-Bausch Health: Climbs after Piper upgrade to "overweight"

** Bausch Health climbs on Weds after Piper Jaffray upgrades to “overweight” and raises PT by $5 to $27, saying drugmaker starting to stand apart

** Stock recently up 8 pct at $19.94 and is top performer on NYSE Arca Pharmaceutical index, which is down 1.8 pct. S&P 500 Health Care index also down ~2 pct

** Senior leadership team has positioned BHC for not only longer-term (LT) EBITDA stability, but potentially meaningful LT growth, Piper says

** Given this, views BHC unique among highly levered generics and brand-focused cos such as Teva, Endo International, Mylan and Mallinckrodt, and even moderately-levered cos such as Allergan

** Says on relative basis, BHC’s asset quality “actually quite good” based on durable consumer-focused eye care segment, visibility on LT durability for top-seller Xifaxan along with growing gastroenterology product footprint and most significant losses of exclusivities now in rear-view mirror

** Now, of 17 analysts covering BHC, 8 rate “buy” or stronger, 5 have “hold”, 4 recommend selling; median PT $31 (Refinitiv data)

** BHC trades at ~9x NTM EV/EBITDA, roughly inline with AGN and TEVA; but stock expensive vs MYL, MNK and ENDP, which trade in 6-7x range

** With today’s advance, BHC trims loss over past 12 mths to ~8 pct

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