Amgen Inc (AMGN): Today's Featured Drugs Winner

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Amgen ( AMGN) pushed the Drugs industry higher today making it today's featured drugs winner. The industry as a whole closed the day up 0.1%. By the end of trading, Amgen rose $1.49 (1.3%) to $113.46 on average volume. Throughout the day, 2,673,715 shares of Amgen exchanged hands as compared to its average daily volume of 3,319,100 shares. The stock ranged in a price between $111.96-$113.68 after having opened the day at $112.22 as compared to the previous trading day's close of $111.97. Other companies within the Drugs industry that increased today were: GW Pharmaceuticals PLC ADR ( GWPH), up 53.2%, Genvec ( GNVC), up 43.7%, Aratana Therapeutics ( PETX), up 15.3% and China Pharma ( CPHI), up 13.0%.

Amgen, the world's largest independent biotechnology company, was founded in Thousand Oaks, California in 1980 as AMGen (Applied Molecular Genetics). Amgen has a market cap of $83.7 billion and is part of the health care sector. Shares are up 29.0% year to date as of the close of trading on Wednesday. Currently there are 8 analysts that rate Amgen a buy, no analysts rate it a sell, and 12 rate it a hold.

TheStreet Ratings rates Amgen as a buy. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, notable return on equity, reasonable valuation levels, solid stock price performance and growth in earnings per share. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company has had sub par growth in net income.

On the negative front, Idera Pharmaceuticals ( IDRA), down 17.9%, Protalix BioTherapeutics ( PLX), down 15.1%, Natural Alternatives International ( NAII), down 9.0% and Inovio Pharmaceuticals ( INO), down 9.0% , were all laggards within the drugs industry with Regeneron Pharmaceuticals ( REGN) being today's drugs industry laggard.

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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