NEW YORK (
) -- There's been tremendous hype and speculation regarding which companies -- and which stocks -- might "benefit" from a vicious return of the swine flu this fall.
The crassness of the sentiment aside, investors have looked long and hard at everything from vaccine makers to drug-store chains to hospital operators to (on the short side) travel-related outfits such as airlines and cruise ships.
The gamut of companies has ranged from the big (
, licensee of Tamiflu;
, the pharmacist) to the medium (
Inverness Medical Innovations
, the maker of diagnostic instruments) to the small (
, the Chinese vaccine maker that scored China's swine-flu pandemic contract).
Which lead us to the inevitable, if indelicate, question: Which stock is poised to advance as flu season commences in earnest this month?
Scott Eden has covered business -- both large and small -- for more than a decade. Prior to joining TheStreet.com, he worked as a features reporter for Dealmaker and Trader Monthly magazines. Before that, he wrote for the Chicago Reader, that city's weekly paper. Early in his career, he was a staff reporter at the Dow Jones News Service. His reporting has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Men's Journal, the St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times, and the Believer magazine, among other publications. He's also the author of Touchdown Jesus (Simon & Schuster, 2005), a nonfiction book about Notre Dame football fans and the business and politics of big-time college sports. He has degrees from Notre Dame and Washington University in St. Louis.