2013 was a record year for the biotech sector, with the NASDAQ Biotechnology Index hitting record highs again and again, ending the year up over 60% — beating the S&P 500 more than two-fold.
But what can we expect for 2014? That will be the topic of discussion at our opening plenary panel at next week’s BIO CEO & Investor Conference, taking place Monday and Tuesday, February 10-11 in New York.
To help spur the conversation, we put out a survey last month with assistance from Mark Schoenebaum of ISI Group to see how buy-side investors are feeling about the industry as we head into 2014. The results from over 200 leading investors are in, and they’re feeling bullish. More than 56% of respondents expect double digit returns once again for major biotech indices this year. Respondents also saw the most opportunity investing in small-cap companies rather than large-caps.
Oncology is the disease areas investors are most bullish on, with nearly half (48%) saying it offered the best investment opportunities. Rare diseases and immunology were a distant second and third, with 16% and 14% respectively.
Of particular interest was the exciting field of immuno-oncology, following a lot of data on PD-1 inhibitors that reported out last year. That will be the focus of Tuesday’s oncology workshop, Keeping an I on Oncology: The ASCO Immunotherapy Preview.