Top Health Care Stocks For Your March 2022 Watchlist
Health care stocks are among the largest sectors in the stock market today. Whether we like it or not, it is inevitable that living beings will require some form of health care services at some point in their lives. For these reasons, health care stocks would always be in demand regardless of the stock market sentiment. Moreover, the coronavirus pandemic has been a huge catalyst for the industry. In fact, President Joe Biden announced earlier this week that his administration has launched the “Test to Treat” initiative that will allow Americans to get tested for COVID-19 at a pharmacy. What’s more, they can immediately receive free pills if they test positive.
Of course, the industry has also been advancing in areas outside of COVID-19. For instance, we saw Novo Nordisk (NYSE: NVO) announcing that it has more than doubled its target for sales of obesity drugs by 2025. It now aims to generate annual obesity drug sales of more than $3.72 billion by 2025. The overwhelming demand for its new Wegovy drug is an indication that people are now increasingly aware of health care problems. With all said and done, here are some of the top health care stocks in the stock market today.
Health Care Stocks To Watch In March 2022
- Pfizer Inc (NYSE: PFE)
- AstraZeneca plc (NASDAQ: AZN)
- Eli Lilly And Co (NYSE: LLY)
- Sanofi SA (NASDAQ: SNY)
- Bristol-Myers Squibb Co (NYSE: BMY)
To kick start the list, we have the research-based global biopharmaceutical company, Pfizer. Essentially, it engages in the discovery, development, manufacturing, and distribution of biopharmaceutical products. Now, the company works across markets to develop wellness, prevention, treatments, and cures for various diseases.
In fact, the company is expected to provide around 10 million courses of Paxlovid to low- and middle-income countries this year, according to an official with the Global Fund. For those unaware, Paxlovid is a highly effective oral COVID-19 antiviral treatment.
Furthermore, the company announced on Wednesday that its respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) vaccine candidate, PF-06482077, has received Breakthrough Therapy Designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The drug is for the prevention of RSV-associated lower respiratory tract illness in infants from birth up to six months of age. This is an important milestone for the company as it aims to address the detrimental impact of RSV diseases on infants. Given these exciting developments, do you believe PFE stock will have more room to grow?
Another company that has played an important role in combating the pandemic over the past two years would be AstraZeneca. Put simply, this is a biopharmaceutical company that focuses on the treatment of serious diseases. As of now, its primary focus is on the field of Oncology, Cardiovascular, Renal & Metabolism, and Respiratory & Immunology. Impressively, AZN stock has been on a steady incline over the past year. The company stock has risen more than 20% within the period.
In February, the company along with Honeywell (NASDAQ: HON) announced a commercial partnership to develop the next-generation respiratory inhalers. These inhalers will be used for the treatment of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
In addition, it claims that the propellants used will have near-zero global warming potential. Most patients suffering from COPD and asthma are using pressurized metered-dose inhalers that could contribute to the global carbon footprint of respiratory care. So, this new development will be of tremendous importance for both the environment and patients with respiratory issues. Considering these points, would you say that AZN stock is a top health care stock to watch now?
Eli Lilly And Co
Following that, let us have a look at the drug manufacturing company, Elli Lilly And Co (LLY). For a sense of scale, the company has offices in 18 countries while its products are sold in approximately 125 countries. The company’s portfolio includes treatments for various diseases including diabetes, cancer, endocrine-related illnesses, and COVID-19 to name a few. Those who invested in LLY stock a year ago would have seen gains of over 28%. On top of that, there are positive developments that would likely excite investors recently.
On Thursday, LLY and Incyte Corporation (NASDAQ: INCY) announced that its arthritis drug baricitinib has a role to play in the survivability of COVID-19 patients. In its RECOVERY trial, over 8,000 patients were administered baricitinib in addition to usual care. It appears that the drug could reduce the risk of death in hospitalized patients by 13%.
Most importantly, it does not matter which coronavirus treatment was given prior. Well, these findings confirm and extend its earlier findings, providing greater certainty that baricitinib is indeed beneficial for COVID-19 patients. With that said, would you consider adding LLY stock to your watchlist?
Sanofi is a French-based healthcare company. It engages in the research, development, manufacturing, and marketing of therapeutic solutions. The company’s operating segments are Pharmaceuticals, Consumer Healthcare, and Vaccines. With Sanofi’s presence in over 100 countries around the world, it strives to transform the practice of medicine. Investors are also hopeful that its coronavirus vaccine would gain regulatory approval soon.
Recently, Sanofi and GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE: GSK) announced their intentions to submit data from both their booster and Phase 3 efficacy trials as the basis for regulatory applications for a coronavirus vaccine.
Besides that, Nirsevimab, a drug currently developed by Sanofi and AstraZeneca, has shown positive results from a Phase 3 trial. This is the first investigational long-acting antibody designed to protect all infants across the RSV season with a single dose. Results showed that Nirsevimab has a 74.5% reduction in lower respiratory tract infections caused by RSV requiring medical care in healthy infants. For these reasons, could SNY stock be worth watching right now?
To sum it up, we have another biopharmaceutical company, Bristol-Myers Squibb. Some of its products include chemically-synthesized or small molecule drugs and products produced from biological processes, called biologics. BMY stock has been on a steady upward trajectory, increasing more than 10% since the start of the year.
The company started the month of March on a positive note. One of its drug development partners, Dragonfly Therapeutics, recently announced the achievement of the Phase 1 clinical development milestone for the DF6002 program. The drug is a monovalent IL-12 immunoglobulin Fc fusion protein that aims to achieve strong anti-tumor efficacy by establishing an inflammatory tumor microenvironment.
This is a necessity for productive anti-tumor responses. Bristol-Myers Squibb will be responsible for the development and any subsequent commercialization of the drug. With that in mind, should investors be keeping a close eye on BMY stock?