Tuesday was another positive day on Wall Street, with major benchmarks adding to their gains from Monday. A lack of bad news from North Korea and in-line damage estimates from Hurricane Irma's path of destruction combined to make investors more optimistic about the long-term future for stocks, and shares have thus far weathered what is typically a volatile season for the financial markets without anything more than minor pullbacks. That hasn't kept some individual stocks from suffering losses as a result of bad news at a company-specific level, however. Intercept Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: ICPT), Health Insurance Innovations (NASDAQ: HIIQ), and Investors Real Estate Trust (NYSE: IRET) were among the wort performers on the day. Below, we'll look more closely at these stocks to tell you why they did so poorly.
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Intercept deals with a setback
Shares of Intercept Pharmaceuticals dropped 13.5% after the biotechnology company sent out a letter to medical professionals regarding its Ocaliva treatment for a rare liver disease known as primary biliary cholangitis. The letter urged doctors and other healthcare providers to follow the dosing schedule for the drug that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved, emphasizing the negative side effects that can occur if the drug is given more frequently or in larger dosages than approved. In addition, Intercept's chief medical officer said that providers should "exercise a low threshold for drug discontinuation or interruption," and that spooked investors who were already nervous about Ocaliva's safety profile.
Health Insurance Innovations fights the bears
Health Insurance Innovations stock fell nearly 15.5% as the company responded to allegations raised by investors betting against the stock of the seller of short-term health insurance and related plans. Strong gains in revenue and profits have sent the stock soaring in recent months, but it has also attracted the attention of those who are more skeptical about the company's fundamental prospects. Under the guise of "addressing misleading information in the marketplace," Health Insurance Innovations gave further information about various regulatory issues it has faced. Some investors seemed disheartened by the fact that the company didn't address every issue that was raised, and with today's drop, the stock has lost nearly half of its value in less than two weeks.
Investors Real Estate makes its report
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Finally, shares of Investors Real Estate Trust finished down over 6.5%. The North Dakota-based real estate investment trust released its most recent results, which included a slight drop in core funds from operations compared to year-ago levels. The REIT has exposure to multifamily projects throughout the upper Midwest, but many have seen it as a proxy for oil and natural gas development in the region, and flagging energy prices have slowed the company's momentum considerably compared to where it was a few years ago. Now, the REIT is going through a portfolio transition, and that has some real estate investors nervous about what the future direction for Investors Real Estate Trust will be after those efforts are complete.
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