The OIS Index of ophthalmic stocks declined by 17.7% during the October market correction, which saw a 7.5% decline in the overall US stock market as measured by the Russell 3000 Index. Healthcare stocks underperformed in October: the NASDAQ Biotechnology Index lost 14.6% of its value, and a composite of US medical device stocks declined by 9.8%. Only five of the 35 stocks in the OIS Index had positive returns in October.
The standout performer in October was Imprimis Pharmaceuticals (+53.6). Melt Pharmaceuticals, a subsidiary of Imprimis, announced several developments related to its pipeline programs in non-opioid, non-intravenous conscious sedation for cataract surgery and other medical procedures.
The two largest negative contributors to OIS Index performance in October were Omeros (–37.4%) and Nightstar Therapeutics (–50.6%), each of which contributed –2.2% to the 17.7% drop in the index. Omeros declined sharply on the first trading day of the month, following a report of Phase II clinical trial results in a non-ophthalmic program related to kidney disease.
Other large decliners in October, but with a smaller impact due to lower weighting within the OIS Index, were Presbia (–59.3%) and EyePoint Pharmaceuticals (–40.1%). The decline for EyePoint appears to be a “sell the news” scenario: the stock had gained 57% over the 30 days prior to the October 15 announcement of FDA approval of YUTIQ (fluocinolone acetonide intravitreal implant) but declined by 38% over the two weeks following the announcement.
The OIS Index is a composite of ophthalmic growth stocks that tracks the investment performance of our sector. Our goal is to highlight ophthalmology investment performance, in absolute terms and compared with broader biotech and medical device industries, as well as the overall stock market. The OIS Index was launched with an initial value of 1,000 on October 1, 2016; as of November 1, 2018, the OIS Index stood at 923.51.
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