Ever since I started this blog I’ve tried to keep it strictly dedicated to analyzing biotech stocks. Today, I would like to make an exception as I feel I must share my opinion about Steven Pearlstein’s story in The Washington Post insinuating that Adam Feuerstein is part of a short sellers’ conspiracy against Northwest Bio (NWBO). When a respected journal breaks with such a preposterous story, we sane biotech bloggers must take a stand.
I don’t know Adam Feuerstein and have never met him. I do read his columns on a regular basis and think he is doing a good job reporting and analyzing biotech companies. In my opinion, his coverage is professional and fair, as he often discusses both the “bull” and “bear” arguments for a given stock.
Adam has an important role of exposing a minority of biotech companies that give this sector a bad reputation. These companies, unlike most biotech companies which are focused on drug development, are busy manipulating and deceiving retail investors who fund worthless development programs and unjustified salaries. Every biotech company has to “sell” itself with press releases and uplifting projections but some companies use PR spins and data manipulations to cast a smokescreen, enabling them to return time after time to investors and raise more money.
You won’t read the truth about these companies in most places for a myriad of reasons: They are not developing interesting drugs, they are usually very small and therefore overlooked by institutionals and sell side analysts, and because most people in this industry (myself included) have little to gain by criticizing them.
For many biotech investors, Adam represents the only line of defense against those fundamentally deceptive companies. He is truly free of hidden agendas as he is not part of a company or an investment group nor does he own stocks. It is so ironic that a respected journal like The Washington Post is part of a campaign seeking to discredit one of the only true journalists who cover the sector.
The attempt to blame short sellers for Northwest Bio’s poor stock performance is pathetic. It is always easier to cling to conspiracy theories, instead of acknowledging the fact that the company has never provided compelling evidence that its cancer vaccines provide benefit to patients. Northwest is not a victim, it is a victimizer of investors and patients. I can only hope that Adam Feuerstein will continue his critical coverage of companies like Northwest Bio.
I would like to express full support of TheStreet’s letter which is calling for the retraction of Pearlstein’s column.
Full disclosure – I never had nor do I plan to have a position (short/long) in NWBO.