TAKEOVER RUMORS MOVE RORER INTO FOCUS AS PHARMACEUTICALS, COMPOSITE DROP
While appearing to lag the rest of its fellow Pharmaceuticals during 1986, Rorer (up 4-7/8 to 45), made a sudden spurt and re-emerged as a potential acquisition target last week. Triggering the interest of Wall Street mavens was Dow's move to sell its 10% interest in Rorer to the arbitrage firm, Steinhardt Partners. "Street" speculation immediately centered on ICN as a possible acquirer -- the proverbial small fish swallowing the larger one. Perhaps a better candidate is Kodak, which owns 5% of ICN and approximately 15% of its subsidiary, Viratek. Kodak announced in the spring that it was looking to buy a pharmaceutical company or companies, and the firm had earmarked $1 bil. for such purposes. It would probably take at least that much to purchase Rorer, and despite ICN's relatively strong cash position after a series of debt and stock offerings, the company appears well short of $1 bil. mark. After weeks of decline, Upjohn stock (up 7 to 93-1/2) moved on Canadian approval of minoxidil for male pattern baldness. Overall, however, the Pharmaceutical Component was the hardest hit segment of the "F-D-C" Index. The Composite's 2.6% decline lagged the Dow, which remained flat at 1899.75 after a topsyturvy week of trading. Chart omitted.
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