Why we added biotech stock Sequenom to the lineup

Author: Bob Freedland

Covestor model: Healthcare

The Healthcare Model had a very good March as it outperformed the S&P 500 index.  During the month I worked at managing the portfolio in a similar fashion as the Buy and Hold Model with adequate cash for a full position so that I could make a series of swaps if I noticed any weakness or fundamental problems in the holding to a new position that was more promising. In addition, I reduced some of the existing positions so that I could hold a wider range of stocks.

Some of the changes during the month including the sale of St. Jude Medical (STJ) on 3/1/12.  STJ actually appreciated 5.75% during the rest of the month.

On March 7, 2012, I initiated a position in Sequenom (SQNM). This biotech stock has an interesting blood test that may be able to replace amniocentesis for genetic testing in utero.  During the remaining of the month Sequenom appreciated 11.2% contributing a great deal to the portfolio’s performance.

On March 19, 2012, I sold my shares of Catalyst Health Solutions (CHSI) and purchased shares of SXC Health Solutions (SXCI) instead. This worked well as SXCI exceeded the CHSI performance during the remaining portion of March:Finally on March 22, 2012, I sold my shares in Lilly (LLY) that simply didn’t appear to have the same potential as Schiff (WNI) a small vitamin and nutraceutical company that announced strong 4th quarter numbers and moved higher. Schiff outperformed Lilly during the remaining of March, 2012.:  

I continue to refine my strategy for the Healthcare Model but like my Buy and Hold Model, I am looking at each holding closely and am willing to part company with any holding that shows either technical or fundamental weakness or both.  It remains a challenge to sometimes hold onto stocks with short-term market-related weaknesses that manage to merely resume their upward moves when the market resumes its own bullish movement.