Markets: Down

NYCOMED AMERSHAM, the diagnostic equipment maker, fell 6.9 per cent last week on concern over US competition, especially in the market for imaging supplies, where the company now generates nearly half of sales. "There's pricing pressure in various markets," said Nigel Barnes, pharmaceuticals analyst with Merrill Lynch.

Daiwa Europe analyst Nigel Keegan said some investors are concerned that Nycomed's new imaging agent, NC100100, may face higher-than-expected competition when it hits the market in 2001. Sonus and Molecular Biosystems are emerging as likely rivals.

"Nycomed gave the impression that NC100100 would own the market, but there are others already there," he said.

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