Back to top

Image: Bigstock

Astrazeneca (AZN) Outpaces Stock Market Gains: What You Should Know

Read MoreHide Full Article

Astrazeneca (AZN - Free Report) closed at $50.88 in the latest trading session, marking a +1.17% move from the prior day. This change outpaced the S&P 500's 0.23% gain on the day. At the same time, the Dow lost 0.03%, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq gained 0.43%.

Heading into today, shares of the pharmaceutical had lost 1.06% over the past month, lagging the Medical sector's gain of 1.7% and the S&P 500's gain of 3.86% in that time.

Investors will be hoping for strength from AZN as it approaches its next earnings release. The company is expected to report EPS of $0.53, up 17.78% from the prior-year quarter. Meanwhile, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for revenue is projecting net sales of $7.01 billion, up 5.2% from the year-ago period.

Any recent changes to analyst estimates for AZN should also be noted by investors. These revisions help to show the ever-changing nature of near-term business trends. As such, positive estimate revisions reflect analyst optimism about the company's business and profitability.

Based on our research, we believe these estimate revisions are directly related to near-team stock moves. To benefit from this, we have developed the Zacks Rank, a proprietary model which takes these estimate changes into account and provides an actionable rating system.

The Zacks Rank system, which ranges from #1 (Strong Buy) to #5 (Strong Sell), has an impressive outside-audited track record of outperformance, with #1 stocks generating an average annual return of +25% since 1988. Within the past 30 days, our consensus EPS projection has moved 2.67% higher. AZN is holding a Zacks Rank of #3 (Hold) right now.

Valuation is also important, so investors should note that AZN has a Forward P/E ratio of 19.34 right now. Its industry sports an average Forward P/E of 14.04, so we one might conclude that AZN is trading at a premium comparatively.

It is also worth noting that AZN currently has a PEG ratio of 1.16. This metric is used similarly to the famous P/E ratio, but the PEG ratio also takes into account the stock's expected earnings growth rate. AZN's industry had an average PEG ratio of 2.04 as of yesterday's close.

The Large Cap Pharmaceuticals industry is part of the Medical sector. This group has a Zacks Industry Rank of 128, putting it in the top 50% of all 250+ industries.

The Zacks Industry Rank includes is listed in order from best to worst in terms of the average Zacks Rank of the individual companies within each of these sectors. Our research shows that the top 50% rated industries outperform the bottom half by a factor of 2 to 1.

Be sure to follow all of these stock-moving metrics, and many more, on Zacks.com.


In-Depth Zacks Research for the Tickers Above


Normally $25 each - click below to receive one report FREE:


AstraZeneca PLC (AZN) - free report >>

Published in