What’s ‘down’ with Teva?

Yet, as of late 2018, the company announced it would be laying off 1,700 of its Israel-based workers.

July 30, 2019 20:52
2 minute read.
What’s ‘down’ with Teva?

A TEVA Pharmaceutical Industries building is seen in Jerusalem last year. (Ammar Awad/Reuters). (photo credit: AMMAR AWAD / REUTERS)

In recent weeks, Teva – Israel’s leading pharmaceutical company – has been plagued with plummeting stock prices and reports of disparity in consumer confidence.

In May, company share prices dropped nearly 11% as the Petah Tikva-based drug manufacturer faced a lawsuit from 44 US states over a price-fixing conspiracy, in which drug prices were inflated up to 1,000% of their original value.

In that same month, the company agreed to pay $85 million to the state of Oklahoma just before it would face trial allegations in a lawsuit claiming that it helped fuel the US opioid epidemic.

But the company has been challenged for longer than just this year. The downfall of a company that started before the founding of the State of Israel began in 2010, when Bayer sued the company over preservative agents not being present in their Gianvi estradiol tablets. The settlement resulted in Teva changing its product marketing to remove the claim that it used the same ingredients as Bayer’s products.

Then, in 2015, Teva was again in court; another drug company took Teva to court to invalidate its patent on a drug the company developed to treat multiple sclerosis. Though ultimately, after several appeals, Teva won the case, it cost the company a fortune and placed it in a negative light.

By 2017, Teva’s Q3 earnings reports sent the stock into depths not seen since 2000; it lost over 60% of its value a few hours after the opening bell. An initial layoff plan, where Teva considered letting go of 10,000 workers to cut expenses, was announced in early December of that year. While investors became more confident in the company, the announcement was followed by protests and strikes.

In September of 2018, its stock price rallied almost 9% to NIS 8,727 on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange after the US Food and Drug Administration approved the selling of a new migraine drug.

Yet, as of late 2018, the company announced it would be laying off 1,700 of its Israel-based workers. However, a third of these layoffs have been delayed until later this year.

Does the company expect to rebound?

Its price on the New York Stock Exchange this year has slumped drastically from its 52-week high at $25.96 to around $8.00 as of this month.

Robinhood Markets Inc., a US-based brokerage and trading platform, shows that of 27 analyst ratings, 19% of them say buying stock in Teva is the best option. Most analysts (67%), say it is best to hold stock for now.

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