AG Edwards Ups Pharmaceutical Resources to 'Buy'

Analyst Albert Rauch says the drugmaker's generic antidepressant should drive earnings growth over the next year

AG Edwards upgraded Pharmaceutical Resources (PRX ) to buy from hold.

Analyst Albert Rauch says Pharmaceutical Resources has been very successful in using partnerships and litigation to gain six months marketing exclusivity for its generic products. He notes it demonstrated an ability to maintain high share in competitive markets. He says the company also is developing higher margin products.

Rauch expects the drugmaker's generic version of top-selling antidepressant Paxil, which is just started shipping to U.S. customers, to drive dramatic earnings per share growth over the next 12 months. He thinks Pharmaceutical Resources is well-positioned for future growth, and notes it has 25 products awaiting FDA approval.

Rauch sees $3.59 2003 earnings per share, and $4.04 earnings per share in 2004. He has a $81 12-month target.

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