merck

Why Bad News Makes the Stock Market Happy

For now, bad news is good for the stock market. Investors judged that the latest weak economic reports will make it more likely that the Fed will keep stimulating the economy

Pfizer Spins Off Zoetis, Biggest IPO Since Facebook, Shares Soar

Pfizer's animal health business Zoetis has raised about $2.2 billion in its initial public offering of 86.1 million shares, and the stock is expected to begin trading Friday. Merck & Co.'s fourth-quarter profit fell 7 percent as generic competition slashed sales of its blockbuster allergy drug Singulair.

Dow Rises Despite Europe's Woes

On Friday, it looked like this week would be ugly. Standard & Poor's had just downgraded the credit ratings of France and several other E.U. countries, the latest domino to fall in Europe's slow-motion economic train wreck. But at least in the U.S., the stock market has shrugged off that news.

A Simple Strategy to Boost Your Returns

Options: It's a word that makes you shiver with fear or salivate at opportunity. In fact, there's one options strategy that's almost certain to add some extra money to your portfolio over time, without adding lots of risk. It's the technique known as writing covered calls, and it's perfect for times like this.

Which Comes First: Jobs or Profits?

Lots of companies are laying off workers, trying to cut costs and improve their profit margins. But how should investors view the news of job cuts at a company? As a sign of deep trouble and worse to come, or as proof of committed management and better times ahead? Here's how to read the pink slips.

Top-Selling Drugs About to Lose Patent Protection

The pharmaceutical industry is about to fall off a cliff -- a patent cliff. Over the next few years, some of the world's most popular and lucrative medicines will go off patent, and generic competition will siphon an estimated quarter of a trillion dollars from companies' bottom lines. Here's a rundown:

Big Pharma Looks Beyond Drugs to Smartphone Apps

Pharmaceutical companies looking for fresh sources of profit are increasingly investing in a range of health care innovations that aren't drugs at all, from smartphone apps and educational websites to social media platforms and wireless devices, reports Ernst & Young.

Two Reasons for Clinical Data Shares to Soar Again

From October 2010 to February 2011, biotech Clinical Data's stock doubled, mostly thanks to FDA approval of its novel antidepressant. But also pushing the stock up -- and making it likely to perhaps double again -- is speculation that a Big Pharma will buy Clinical Data.

As Diabetes Explodes, Big Pharma Is Gearing Up

Diabetes is a growing global scourge, but for Big Pharma it's more of a lifesaver. As the number of people with diabetes and prediabetes explodes, drugmakers are cranking up their research efforts. After all, many existing drugs will soon be losing their patents, and diabetes could be a $55 billion market by 2019.

Which Sector Lost the Most Jobs in 2010? Pharma

If you don't count the U.S. government and nonprofits, the pharmaceutical industry had the most job cuts last year. Mergers, acquisitions and major restructurings made pharma a much smaller and leaner sector -- will those changes now play in its favor?

What a Wild Year It Was
for Health Care

Led by the health insurance reform law, a flurry of drug and food recalls, key medical breakthroughs and plenty of layoffs and lawsuits, 2010 proved to be an exciting -- if not always positive -- year. Here's our list of the year's biggest health stories.

Merck KGaA Is Latest Pharma to Settle Justice Department Claims

German pharmaceutical and chemical company Merck KGaA will pay $280 million to settle a U.S. Department of Justice claim brought against a former subsidiary, Dey Pharma, regarding Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements. This is the fourth such settlement this month alone.