Stocks to Watch: MNKD, NKTR

MannKind Corp. (MNKD) shares gained more than 6% Wednesday after the company announced the completion of a phase-III study on Afrezza, its diabetes candidate. MannKind’s stock, which has been uptrending strong for the last eight months, with shares moving higher from its low of $1.82 to its recent high of $7.02, got an immediate boost on the news. The ticker however, came off of its intraday high of $7.25 to close at $7.02, up 6.28% with 7.4 million shares traded. The stock of the Valencia, Calif.-based biopharmaceutical company is up 242% year-to-date/52-wk: $1.82 – $8.06.

As MNKD continues to make HH from the current range, which is bullish technical price action, momentum traders could take the name to re-test its next major overhead resistance located at the $7.68 level. That said, we recommend longing the name for a short-term trade only after it prints the tape above $7.17 per share.

Another bio player that is currently experiencing some strong price action is Nektar Therapeutics (NKTR). The stock of the San Francisco-based drug-maker rose the most in 11 months after a study of its new slow-release painkiller showed it may not lead to substance abuse of the drug. J.P. Morgan (JPM) called the result “another encouraging sign that the company could have a significant abuse resistant opioid drug for pain.” After the news, NKTR printed its largest single-day tape increase since July 16, gaining 11.62 percent to $10.95 at the close in Nasdaq.

Momentum traders should now look for a long-biased trade in the name as long as it’s trading above overhead resistance located at the $11.06 level. Once a move above those levels is consolidated, then NKTR, which has gained 42 percent in the last 52 weeks, will set up to re-test its next resistance levels at $11.29.

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