Markets & Finance

Morgan Stanley Ups Rating on Biovail

Morgan Stanley raised its investment recommendation on Biovail (BVF) to overweight from equal-weight.

Analyst Marc Goodman cited the company's deal with Johnson & Johnson (JNJ)'s Ortho-McNeil unit to market and distribute tramadol hydrochloride in the U.S. and Puerto Rico. He thinks it's a homerun deal for four reasons: 1) J&J is a strong marketing organization, 2) J&J owns the Ultram brand name, so now this drug can be named Ultram ER, 3) J&J licensed certain rights to Purdue's intellectual property, which eliminates litigation risk, 4) Biovail is getting great economics in the deal (a $60 million supply prepayment). He raised his $2.11 2005 earnings per share estimate to $2.33 and his $2.50 2006 estimate to $2.52. He also raised his $20 stock price target to $30.

Steve Ballmer, Power Forward

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