The U.S. woke up today to the news of a "Brexit" win, which has sent global markets reeling. With the U.K. voting to leave the European Union, several Wall Street analysts have started to speculate on the impact the decision will have on equity markets and different sectors. RBC Capital analyst Michael Yee sees pharmaceutical and biotech names as "somewhat insulated" from EU economic uncertainty and identifies Celgene (CELG - Get Report) as his top large-cap idea to buy in a market selloff.
EXPOSURE TO EU: RBC Capital's Yee said he expects biotech companies to be "somewhat insulated" from EU economic uncertainty caused by the "Brexit" since they provide life-saving drugs and orders from the EU should continue uninterrupted. Additionally, the analyst notes that the sector is generally less sensitive to economic fluctuations and biotech companies generally have low exposure to the U.K., which is a region that already had lower reimbursement for drugs or none at all. Among all the names in the space that he covers, Yee sees Celgene as his top large-cap idea to buy in a market selloff, as he believes the stock would bounce back on a market recovery. The analyst sees Amgen (AMGN - Get Report) , with its low EU sales, and Gilead (GILD - Get Report) , with its low P/E ratio and "very significant" buybacks, as the more "defensive" names in the sector.
CURRENCY IMPACT: Piper Jaffray analyst Joshua Schimmer sees the implications of Brexit on biotech companies as unclear. However, he noted that the EU may take a "hard line" with Britain in order to limit any damage caused by the vote. Schimmer believes that currency may be the biggest impact, with investors likely to shift to USD, creating additional headwinds for those with foreign exchange exposure. The analyst views Alexion (ALXN - Get Report) , BioMarin (BMRN - Get Report) and Gilead as the most exposed to foreign exchange impacts, with Celgene "in the middle" of the group and Biogen (BIIB - Get Report) and Amgen on the other side. Additionally, he pointed out that shipping product in Europe may become more complex and it is unknown whether GDP changes as a result of this will lead to a new set of IPAB calculations.
PRICE ACTION: Several biotech names are sliding in morning trading, as are most stocks in the market, with Alexion dropping almost 8%, BioMarin falling nearly 5% and Celgene down about 3%. Amgen and Biogen have also slid about 2.5% while Gilead is down about 2%.
Reporting by Jessica de Sa-Mota.
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