JP Morgan downgraded Endo Pharma (ENDP) to long term buy from buy.
Analyst Corey Davis says his downgrade is based on his view that the current 23% premium to its peers already reflects the positive outcome for the company's latest drug, Morphidex, a treatment for cancer pain. He thinks Morphidex has a 75% chance for a positive outcome in the June Phase III trials, however, he notes recent market has been unrelenting in its punishment for failure. Davis sees $0.41 2002 earnings per share; he says would cut his $0.46 2003 estimate to $0.35 if Morphidex is not approved. He believes, if Morphidex does not hit its primary endpoint in June, the potential downside to the stock price far outweighs the upside from a positive earnings outcome. Davis has a $15 target.