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Some Biotechs Called 'Strong Buys'

Analysts issue optimistic ratings in wake of sell-off. Sector index has dropped 29% since its high but is still up 44% for the year.

March 16, 2000|Times Staff, Bloomberg News

The biotech group has taken a pounding, with the Amex sector index sliding 29% since it soared to a record early last week. But Wednesday, Wall Street analysts indicated the prognosis appears healthy for several stocks in the volatile sector, issuing several "strong buy" ratings, including:

* PE Corp.-Celera Genomics Group (CRA; $146, down $8) at ING Barings, with a $300 target. The stock, which recently traded as high as $276, has been among the hardest hit this week, as remarks by President Clinton and Britain's leader have raised fears that human genomics companies might not be able to fully capitalize on their research.

* Millennium Pharmaceuticals (MLNM; $171.81, down $4.19), Genset (GENXY; $39, up 50 cents), Gene Logic Inc. (GLGC; $72.06, down $3.44), Axys Pharmaceuticals Inc. (AXPH; $11.88, up $1.25), Affymetrix Inc. (AFFX; $184.69, down $18.38) at BancBoston Robertson Stephens.

* Amgen Inc. (AMGN; $58.50, up $6.25) at Credit Suisse First Boston.

* OSI Pharmaceuticals Inc. (OSIP; $20.31, up $1.63) at Prudential Vector Healthcare Group, with a $32 target.

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