Vertex Pharmaceuticals (VRTX): Today's Featured Drugs Laggard

Editor's Note: TheStreet ratings do not represent the views of TheStreet's staff or its contributors. Ratings are established by computer based on metrics for performance (which includes growth, stock performance, efficiency and valuation) and risk (volatility and solvency). Companies with poor cash flow or high debt levels tend to earn lower ratings in our model.

Vertex Pharmaceuticals ( VRTX) pushed the Drugs industry lower today making it today's featured Drugs laggard. The industry as a whole closed the day down 0.9%. By the end of trading, Vertex Pharmaceuticals fell 63 cents (-1.3%) to $46.45 on light volume. Throughout the day, 1.5 million shares of Vertex Pharmaceuticals exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 2.2 million shares. The stock ranged in price between $46.34-$47.36 after having opened the day at $47.08 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $47.08. Other companies within the Drugs industry that declined today were: Celsion Corporation ( CLSN), down 13.4%, Telik ( TELK), down 12.1%, Aoxing Pharmaceutical Company ( AXN), down 12%, and Zalicus ( ZLCS), down 10%.
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Vertex Pharmaceuticals Incorporated engages in discovering, developing, manufacturing, and commercializing small molecule drugs for the treatment of serious diseases worldwide. Vertex Pharmaceuticals has a market cap of $10.26 billion and is part of the health care sector. The company has a P/E ratio of 76.4, above the S&P 500 P/E ratio of 17.7. Shares are up 13% year to date as of the close of trading on Tuesday. Currently there are 13 analysts that rate Vertex Pharmaceuticals a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and four rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Vertex Pharmaceuticals as a hold. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, good cash flow from operations and notable return on equity. However, as a counter to these strengths, we also find weaknesses including unimpressive growth in net income and feeble growth in the company's earnings per share.

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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