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Coronavirus Scare Supports These Biotech ETFs & Stocks

Sanghamitra Saha

It is widely-known that global markets went berserk in the past month due to the increasing coronavirus scare. The confirmed cases crossed 3,80,000 while death toll topped 16,500 so far. Wall Street slipped to the bear market zone with the S&P 500, the Dow Jones and the Nasdaq composite losing about 30.9%, 33.9% and 28.4% in the past month (as of Mar 23, 2020).

It clearly shows that the Nasdaq’s performance has been better-off than the other two key equity gauges. On Mar 23 too, the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones lost about 3% but the Nasdaq slid only 0.3%. Investors might be wondering what could offer support to the Nasdaq. Let’s delve a little deeper.

Some Biotechs Just Rallied

If you want to screen stocks under the Nasdaq that have gained at least 1% in the past month, you’ll will be left with only 43 stocks, and majority of those hidden gems belong to the biotech/pharma/healthcare sector. It shows that the biotech industry helped the Nasdaq in losing lower than the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones.

After all, it’s all about coronavirus treatments and vaccines for the biotech sector at the moment. A host of biotech companies is testing drugs and vaccines for the COVID-19 treatment. Evidently, those in the making and testing of COVID-19 kits, drugs and vaccines have gained immensely in the past month.

Winning Biotech ETFs

Let’s take a look at the better-positioned biotech ETFs (that lost lesser than the broader market) in the past-month frame.

iShares Genomics Immunology and Healthcare ETF IDNA — down 19.4%

The underlying NYSE FactSet Global Genomics and Immuno Biopharma Index comprises developed and emerging market companies that could benefit from long-term growth and innovation in genomics, immunology and bioengineering. It charges 47 bps in fees.

iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF IBB — down 18.6%

The underlying NASDAQ Biotechnology Index contains securities of NASDAQ-listed companies that are classified as either biotechnology or pharmaceuticals. The fund charges 47 bps in fees (read: ETF Strategies to Play the Rising Virus-Induced Volatility).

Loncar Cancer Immunotherapy ETF CNCR — down 18.9%

The underlying Loncar Cancer Immunotherapy Index seeks to track the combined performance of a basket of companies that develop therapies to treat cancer by harnessing the body’s own immune system. It charges 79 bps in fees.

VanEck Vectors Biotech ETF BBH — down 19.1%

The underlying MVIS US Listed Biotech 25 Index tracks the overall performance of companies involved in the development and production, and marketing and sales of drugs based on genetic analysis and diagnostic equipment. It charges 35 bps in fees.

ARK Genomic Revolution Multi-Sector ETF ARKG — down 22.6%

ARKG invests in companies that are into CRISPR, targeted therapeutics, Bioinformatics, Molecular Diagnostics, Stem Cells and Agricultural Biology. It charges 75 bps in fees.

Biotech Stocks That Gained in the Past Month

The below-mentioned biotech stocks hail from the Nasdaq Index.

Co-Diagnostics Inc. CODX — Up 242.6%

The molecular diagnostics company completed the clinical evaluation of its Logix Smart COVID-19 PCR test that detects COVID-19’s presence within two hours. The stock has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

Vir Biotechnology Inc. VIR — Up 135.1%

The Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) clinical-stage immunology company is focused on combining immunologic insights to treat and prevent serious infectious diseases. The company signed a letter of intent with biotech bigwig Biogen Inc. (BIIB) for the clinical manufacturing of human monoclonal antibodies to develop the potential treatment of COVID-19.

Aytu Bioscience Inc. AYTU — Up 90.6%

The Zacks Rank #2 healthcare company is focused on commercialization of novel products in the field of urology.It recently designed and produced coronavirus test kits that provide results in 10 minutes or less. The kit uses a drop of blood from a finger prick, which seems to provide faster results than nasal swabs. However, the company recommends a second test for people tested positive.

Forty Seven Inc. FTSV — Up 87.4%

The Zacks Rank #3 company is a clinical-stage immuno-oncology entity. It focused on developing novel checkpoint therapies to activate macrophages in the fight against cancer. In early March, Gilead (GILD) announced that it will acquire Forty Seven for $4.9 billion.

Centogene N.V. CNTG — Up 78.5%

The Zacks Rank #3 commercial-stage company focused on rare diseases that transform real-world clinical and genetic data into actionable information for patients, physicians and pharmaceutical companies.

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iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF (IBB): ETF Research Reports
 
Loncar Cancer Immunotherapy ETF (CNCR): ETF Research Reports
 
VanEck Vectors Biotech ETF (BBH): ETF Research Reports
 
ARK Genomic Revolution ETF (ARKG): ETF Research Reports
 
Aytu Bioscience, Inc. (AYTU) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Forty Seven, Inc. (FTSV) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Vir Biotechnology, Inc. (VIR) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
iShares Genomics Immunology and Healthcare ETF (IDNA): ETF Research Reports
 
Co-Diagnostics, Inc. (CODX) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Centogene N.V. (CNTG) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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