[UPDATED 08.24.08 @ 2 PM EDT: The Case FOR NYSE Trading Halts -- Schering's SEAS Announcement: a Textbook Example.]
Compare Vytorin to a placebo (i.e., stack the deck).
Schedule Schering and Merck Second Quarter 2008 Earnings Calls for pre-market-open on July 21, 2008.
Delay both calls -- to after market-close, on July 21, 2008 -- for "an important update" on SEAS: Vytorin to placebo.
H I L A R I O U S L Y. . . . bad theatre! Why?
Well, what is missing from the above plot-synopsis is this: According to paragraph two of Schering-Plough's press release, the SEAS update will be published around 1 PM EDT today -- during the trading day.
Were this "Norway Update" truly material, it would not be published during the trading day, as at a minimum (and more fully-discussed here), an NYSE Halt-Trading process would be invoked -- with a "News-Pending" flag on the stock's ticker symbol. If Schering opens (at all) this morning -- on the NYSE -- in about 20 minutes' time, then this is all a stunt.
My prediction, then: There will be no Earth-shatteringly-positive actual news from the SEAS update -- out of Sweden.
You read it here, first.
UPDATED 9:28 PM EDT
I was mistaken. A Greek tragedy, in three acts. . . .
PharmaGossip, and PharmaLaw each featured this post, earlier today -- while I was off the grid. PharmaGossip apparently even shoved a link to it, onto the WSJ's Healthcare Blog! Wow! -- Thanks!
▲ Schering-Plough's common stock has opened very-badly on the NYSE — off 5.7 percent in the first few minutes of trading — falling through $20.20 now.
▲ Half a million shares in the first ten trades.
▲ I’d say that the market has sniffed-out a pig, despite its lipstick. Strictly "Bread and Circus" stuff, out of Kenilworth these days. . . .
▲ Now falling through $19.65 (Down 8.68 percent). Heavy volumes. Gee this looks to have been a real swell idea, Mr. Hassan.
▲ Now $19.54 (Down 8.86 percent) 2.86 million shares changing hands in the first 40 minutes.
▲ Now $19.34 (Down 9.8 percent) 3.4 million shares changing hands in the first 50 minutes.
▲ Just fell through $19 support floor: $18.73 (Down 12.3 percent) 4.4 million shares changing hands in the first 58 minutes.
▲ Now it's a 13 percent "down bubble". And still diving:
Ensign: "Approaching crush depth, Captain Hassan."
Chief of the Boat: "Orders, sir?"
Captain Hassan: "Grant me more stock options (at $18.85) -- only that will right the ship, men!"
▲ I've got to jet. Good luck, folks.
You did read it here, above, first.