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Wachovia Starts Biosite with 'Underperform'

Wachovia initiated coverage of Biosite (BSTE) with underperform.

Analyst Theodore Huber sees the B-type natriuretic peptide (BNP) market growing 250% in 2003 as blood tests are quickly becoming the standard in congestive heart failure diagnosis and monitoring. But he notes that Biosite's BNP monopoly comes to an abrupt end with Bayer's market entry before the end of the second quarter of 2003. He also notes Abbott Laboratories expects a first-quarter 2004 launch of BNP in the U.S.

Huber says he expects Bayer and Abbott's market share gains to be swift and significant; he sees Biosite's share slipping below 30% by 2005. He also predicts a 2004 revenue decline, and 10% earnings per share growth; he sees 2005 earnings per share down 11%. Huber set a $30 to $35 6-month to 12-month valuation range.

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