Skip to Content
Market Update

International Trade Commission Ruling Hurts VISX

The largest U.S. maker of eye lasers, a health-care fund favorite, tumbles hard.

VISX (VISX), the largest maker of eye-surgery lasers in the United States, fell 41% today. The stock plummeted on news that the International Trade Commission ruled that VISX's competitor, Nidek, had not infringed on the firm's patents.

VISX has been one of the darlings of the health-care sector in a year when many health stocks are struggling. Indeed, even after today's massive drop, VISX is still up nearly 138% for the year.

Not only has the stock been a favorite among health-care fund managers in 1999, many diversified funds have also held big stakes in VISX. For example, according to the most recent portfolios available, several funds offered by Scudder Kemper Investments--including Kemper Global Discovery (SGSCX), Scudder Health Care (SCHLX), and Kemper Aggressive Growth (KGGAX)--hold positions in the stock. There are also several other funds that are fond of the laser firm: Evergreen Aggressive Growth (EAGAX), for instance, also holds a sizable stake.

VISX said that it would request a review of the International Trade Commission's ruling.