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February 11, 2011
Merck, J&J, and Remicade: Waiting Nervously
Is Merck going to hold on to Remicade (and its follow-up) or not? That topic came up around here (and not just here) right after the merger with Schering-Plough was announced - it was the whole reason for the elaborately structured legal charade that Schering-Plough was buying Merck, after all. The issue is in arbitration, and a ruling could come any day now. Or in the spring, or who knows - but Wall Street is starting to bite its nails.
It'll be easy to spot when the decision comes down. Merck stock will suddenly move a good 5 per cent - but in which direction? I'll go ahead and get my prediction down, in case we get word soon: I think Merck will lose out. The best that they can hope for, I think, is a fairly small share of the profits, and they may well not even get that. Whoever advised Merck's executives that this issue could be finessed - and the executives who believed that theory - will, in that case, not come out looking very good at all.
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