Defensive issues were under pressure today as money jumped back into riskier stocks.
The American Stock Exchange Pharmaceutical Index was down 2.2%, with just about every component moving to the downside.
Yesterday, IMS Health (RX) reported that sales of prescription drugs rose 15%, to $145.1 billion in 2000. Today, the stock has moved a little higher, gaining 0.7% to $26.84.
Pfizer (PFE - Get Report) was the leader in annual U.S. sales, but today the stock was off 1.8% to $43.04. The company announced that it promoted Karen Katen, its current president of U.S. pharmaceuticals, to become the new president of its pharmaceuticals group and executive vice president of the entire company.American Home Products (AHP - Get Report) also shook up its leadership a bit, naming Robert Essner its chief executive. Essner will keep his current title of president. The stock was down 3.8% to $59.53. Blue-chip drug stocks -- Johnson & Johnson (JNJ - Get Report) and Merck (MRK - Get Report) -- were contributing the most drag to the