The stock of Advanced Cell Technology (OTC: ACTC) capped the week off with a minute gain today on better than average volume. After hitting a new annual low of $0.06 nine days ago, the stock has rebounded by over 33% to finish the Friday session at $0.085. The number of shares traded exceeded 7.3 million shares, or roughly 2 million greater than its average daily volume over the last three months.
Perhaps buyers this morning were buoyed by news on Thursday that a fourth patient in clinical trials for Stargardt’s Macular Dystrophy was injected with 100,000 embryonic stem cells-derived retinal pigment epithelial cells. The opening print of $0.088 ended up being the high for the day. The stock sagged to $0.08 at the end of the first 30 minutes, and then slowly climbed to end the day with a gain of 1.2%. Hourly volume during the session remained steady.
Driven by a spate of news and positive opinions on the biotechnology sector in January, shares of Advanced Cell Technology spiked to a new 52-week high when it traded for $0.20 in the first month of 2012. Buyers quickly retreated afterwards and the stock has drifted lower ever since. Volume has been muted compared to the 50 million shares traded during the time in January when the stock spiked and dived. Perhaps the recent uptick in volume and price can be related to other news and commentary released in the last two weeks on the company and competitors.
The Massachusetts based company focuses on developing and commercializing embryonic and adult stem cell therapies for the treatment of eye, autoimmune, and heart diseases along with blood replacement. Advanced Cell Technology was founded in the year 2000, and the company holds approximately 35 patents. Insiders have been active the last three months registering five buys and three sales.
Yesterday, a couple of promoters put out emails concerning Advanced Cell Technology. Stock Wizards noted, “ACTC: Technical Moving Average Breakout, News.” Triple Crown Penny Stocks made a similar comment.
Buyers in the biotechnology sector thrive on tidbits of news that hold promise for a treatment breakthrough. News stories and tweets abound with clinical trial results. Of course, clinical trials are one thing and results to satisfy the FDA are completely another thing. When the opening bell rings on Monday, traders will have to decide whether promise equals results. They must also look into their crystal balls to see whether the recent rally has legs with further to run.
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