AstraZeneca PLC (AZN): Today's Featured Drugs Winner

The drugs industry closed the day up 2%. Tibet Pharmaceuticals Inc ( TBET), NovaBay Pharmaceuticals Inc ( NBY), Neptune Technologies & Bioressources Inc ( NEPT), and Inovio Pharmaceuticals Inc ( INO) were all winners today within the drugs industry with AstraZeneca ( AZN) being today's featured drugs winner. AstraZeneca rose $1.10 (2.5%) to $45.85 on average volume. Throughout the day, 1.6 million shares of AstraZeneca exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of two million shares.

AstraZeneca PLC discovers, develops, and commercializes prescription medicines for cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, infection, neuroscience, oncology, and respiratory and inflammation diseases worldwide. AstraZeneca has a market cap of $60.1 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 7.9, above the average drugs industry P/E ratio of 7.6 and below the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are down 3.1% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday.

TheStreet Ratings rates AstraZeneca as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its growth in earnings per share, revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, attractive valuation levels and expanding profit margins. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow.

On the negative front, Telik Inc ( TELK), Cormedix Inc ( CRMD), Sangamo BioSciences Inc ( SGMO), and ProPhase Labs Inc ( PRPH) were all losers within the drugs industry with Exact Sciences Corporation ( EXAS) being today's drugs industry Loser Spotlight stock.

For investors not wanting singular stock exposure, ETFs may be of interest. Investors who are bullish on the drugs industry could consider SPDR S&P Pharmaceuticals ETF ( XPH) while those bearish on the drugs industry could consider ProShares UltraShort Nasdaq Biotech ( BIS).

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