Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY)
Market Cap: $81 billion
Current Dividend Yield: 2.9%
According to the latest Express Scripts Drug Trend Report released last week, Hepatitis C treatments are projected to grow by 100% this year — and by 200% in each of the next two years.
That’s one great reason why pharmaceuticals like Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY) are challenging Gilead Sciences’ (GILD) powerful Hep C franchise. It didn’t hurt BMY that the FDA gave its combination daclatasvir (DCV) and asunaprevir (ASV) drug its “breakthrough therapy designation” in February.
BMY also is raising the ante in its HIV franchise: last week, it submitted a new drug application to the FDA for a fixed-dose combination of atazanavir sulfate and a boosting agent known as cobicistat that can increase the level of certain HIV-1 medicines in the blood and make them more effective. If approved, atazanavir sulfate and cobicistat could offer patients living with HIV-1 a single tablet that eliminates the need to take a boosting agent in a separate tablet.
BMY shares are down 8% so far this year, and although its forward P/E of nearly 29 doesn’t look cheap, I still rank it a buy now for the growth prospects and the stability. BMY has a beta of only 0.36 — that indicates it is 64% less volatile than the broader market.
As of this writing, Susan J. Aluise did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.