E Gold Is Back

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Wednesday was another mixed day with oil stocks and foreign telcos up from demand rising--but US telcos going their own ways, with AT&T (T) up, and Verizon (VZ) down because it lost wireless subs. There were hints of recovery with all the US indexes in the plus column early in the session. Giving the way later to a more nuanced treatment of Tech stocks in particular because of Netflix (NFLX) disappointing.

*Roche (RHHBY) gained 2.6% in Swiss trading today after it reported sales of CHF 14.9 bn ($16.2 bn) in Q1 2020, a 1% drop from the sales a year earlier (CHF 15.1 bn) but a 3% rise in constant currencies because of the strong Swiss franc. It rose 2.12% at the US opening. And now is up 2.48%.

In a statement, Roche said that relative sales weakness in the first quarter was due to the comparable period in 2020 being largely unaffected by the pandemic. COVID-19 only started to have a significant impact from April 2020, 

Roche’s mainstay drugs business was hampered by the pandemic because lockdowns led to a decline in demand for medicines that require regular visits to doctors and hospitals. This was partly balanced by additional sales of drugs used to treat COVID-19, such as treatments for coronavirus-associated pneumonia.

Pharma sales which account for over 2/3 of revenues fell 9% at constant currencies from 2020 levels to CHF10.6 bn. New medicines saw strong growth, except for a drop of CHF 1.6 bn from generics for its cancer drugs, now off-patent.

The smaller diagnostics line gained from covid-19 tests with sales up 55% to CHF 4.3 bn. RHHBY did particularly well looking for mutations of the virus. Its antibody trial is on track.

“The uptake of our recently introduced diagnostic tests and medicines remains strong, while we continue to see the expected impact from biosimilars on sales of our established medicines,” said CEO Severin Schwan. “The upcoming acquisition of GenMark underlines our commitment to help control infectious diseases and antibiotic resistance.” GNMK-Q is a diagnostics specialist.

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William K. 3 weeks ago Member's comment

""Gold is Back!" I did not realize that Gold had left.