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Monday, September 18, 2017

Charts at New Market Highs

Today (9/18/17) the S&P500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at new record highs.

Here are some very interesting charts:

This chart of the Dow is best viewed on a large screen in "Full Screen Mode"
Note the break-out of the Dow above the top dashed blue line followed by a correction to test the breakout from above.  This aligned with many of my sentiment indicators where I also sent out buy alerts for several stocks for my Explore Portfolio.  

Emerging Markets have been on fire, especially since loading up while in the circled yellow region!

Biotech (IBB) is up about 50% from its 2016 bottom.  With plenty of room to the upside for the sector, I have great hope for my Explore Portfolio positions in two small biotech companies that I added to during the period of weakness.  I have some very nice gains already, but would love to see more!

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Thursday, September 14, 2017

GSK's Shingrix containing Agenus' QS-21 Stimulon® adjuvant receives Unanimous FDA Advisory Committee recommendation for approval

LEXINGTON, Mass., Sept. 13, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Agenus Inc. (NASDAQ: AGEN), an immuno-oncology company with a pipeline of immune checkpoint antibodies and cancer vaccines, announced today that GlaxoSmithKline's (GSK) shingles vaccine candidate, Shingrix, containing Agenus' proprietary immune adjuvant, QS-21 Stimulon®, was unanimously recommended for approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee.

"The Advisory Committee's recommendation for the approval of Shingrix marks the first for a product that includes Agenus' proprietary immune adjuvant, QS-21 Stimulon, and serves as a significant validation," said Garo Armen, Ph.D., Agenus (AGEN) CEO and Chairman of the Board. "In addition to being studied in diverse development stage vaccines, QS-21 Stimulon is also a critical component of our neoantigen vaccine formulations. We believe QS-21 provides Agenus with a competitive advantage due to its demonstrated ability to bolster immunogenicity in diverse vaccine formulations offering potential benefit to patients."

A Biologics License Applications (BLA) filed with the FDA by GSK for Shingrix for the prevention of herpes zoster (also known as shingles) in people aged 50 years and older is under regulatory review. The FDA will consider the Advisory Committee vote as it reviews the BLA, although it is not required to follow the recommendation.

GSK's shingles vaccine candidate is not currently approved for use anywhere in the world. Regulatory filings in the European Union, Canada, Australia and Japan are underway

QS-21 Stimulon is being evaluated in various GSK development candidates in addition to being studied in Agenus' neoantigen vaccine, AutoSynVax™, now in a Phase 1 clinical trial.

About Agenus 
Agenus is a clinical-stage immuno-oncology company focused on the discovery and development of therapies that engage the body's immune system to fight cancer. The Company's vision is to expand the patient populations benefiting from cancer immunotherapy by pursuing a number of combination approaches that leverage a broad repertoire of antibody therapeutics and proprietary cancer vaccine platforms. The Company is equipped with a suite of antibody discovery platforms and a state-of-the-art GMP manufacturing facility with the capacity to support early phase clinical programs. Agenus is headquartered in Lexington, MA. For more information, please visit; information that may be important to investors will be routinely posted on our website.

Forward-Looking Statements 
This press release contains forward-looking statements that are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the federal securities laws, including statements regarding the FDA's pending review of GSK's BLA for Shingrix, as well as statements regarding Agenus' product candidates and clinical trial plans and activities. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially. These risks and uncertainties include, among others, the factors described under the Risk Factors section of our most recent Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q or Annual Report on Form 10-K filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Agenus cautions investors not to place considerable reliance on the forward-looking statements contained in this release. These statements speak only as of the date of this press release, and Agenus undertakes no obligation to update or revise the statements, other than to the extent required by law. All forward-looking statements are expressly qualified in their entirety by this cautionary statement.


Agenus Inc. 
Michael Plater 

View original content:

SOURCE Agenus Inc.

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Wednesday, September 06, 2017

During Market Turbulence Diversification Works!

Yesterday a subscriber who's worked to get a better asset allocation for her age (after subscribing to my newsletter 2.5 yrs ago in early 2015) was worried about the market and current events sent me this short email.
On 9/5/2017 5:16 PM, RH wrote: 
Hi Kirk;  
The market really looks like it tanked today, right?
OMG, I never really know what to do with next step……
I try to answer all emails, even if they don't have a specific question as I see part of my "service" is to reassure subscribers when they are worried.

Here is part of my reply (removing some personal details for this "edited" reply.)
Remember, one reason we took so many profits and diversified from US stocks that were way up to add to international stocks and build cash is the market often goes down.  You have a LOT of cash now (50:50 conservative asset allocation) so if the market goes down by 10 or 20%, then you could put some of it to work buying stocks at sale prices.

  • an H-bomb tested by the nut in N. Korea plus
  • Hurricane Harvey left hundreds of thousands with huge storm damage in Texas
  • Hurricane Irma is heading towards Florida and it could be even bigger
  • Tropical storm Jose is following Irma and could hit either areas just as they start to recover..... 
yet the stock market was only off about 3% at the low!  Stocks like Finisar and GE really suffered but others that investors love, including Emerging markets (VWO) that we recently bought at much lower prices, continue to do well. 
So... remember that your asset allocation is much better now even with the stock market near record highs!  You've done the work to be ready for a big decline.... yet if the market continues to chug higher, you have enough in to do really well too!
On 9/6/2017 10:24 AM, RH wrote: 
You somehow know me well and give me peace of mind.
Thank you ever so much.
Nobody likes to see stocks they own go down but with proper asset allocation and diversification, big declines are great opportunities to increase your overall market return.

Lets say you retire with a $1,000,000 investment portfolio.  To sleep well at night you put half into fixed income and half into stocks according to my "Conservative Core Portfolio."  If the stock market drops 50%, which is has twice since the year 2000, then you would have roughly $750,000 and probably more because your fixed income on the conservative side of the portfolio would continue higher and your stock portfolio (ETFs or individual stocks) would continue to pay dividends.  

I'd use the 50% bear market to significantly add stocks to my Explore Portfolio (as I did during both bear markets.)  I would also do a MINIMUM of one portfolio reallocation from fixed income to stocks at the end of the year if stocks were still down just as last January I moved a great deal of cash out of markets that were way up in the Core Portfolios to fixed income to lock in gains.

If you need references to verify I took profits when the markets were up and bought when they were down to get the returns I post, then I am happy to provide them.  It blows me away that so many sell their newsletter services and don't provide simple return tables and graphs like I do below.  That is a RED FLAG WARNING about what they sell.

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VWO Buy Alert Sent via Email
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