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5 Healthcare Stocks to Watch

Healthcare is cruising along this earnings season. So far this quarter, only one S&P healthcare company, Aetna , has missed its consensus EPS estimate. Yesterday after the bell Amgen blew the cover off the ball with a 40% rise in earnings and this morning, Teva Pharmaceuticals beat by three cents per share. This week there are over 20 more healthcare companies reporting; here are some to watch.

Today, July 28

  • Teva - Reported this morning. The world's largest generic drug maker beat the street this morning and is trading at an all time high. That is now 10 straight quarters of beating the street. The company now sees 2010 growth at 35%.
  • McKesson - Reports after the bell. This drug distributor is trading at levels not seen last October. It has only missed analyst consensus numbers once in the past 16 quarters and the company was upgraded yesterday by Raymond James.

Tomorrow, July 29

  • Medco - Reports before the bell. This pharmaceutical benefits manager (PBM) is trading at a new 52-week high. It has beaten analyst consensus numbers in the past 10 straight quarters. Could be a potential buyer of Aetna's PBM business.
  • Wellpoint - Reports before the bell. This health insurer is near its 52-week high. It has beaten analyst consensus numbers in 5 of the past 7 quarters. Watch the numbers to see if Aetna's miss was an exception or will hit other insurers too.
  • Express Scripts - Reports after the bell. This PBM is also hitting price levels it has not seen since October and is another potential buyer of Aetna's PBM business. It has beaten analyst consensus numbers in 12 of the past 13 quarters and has earnings growth forecast for 2010 of nearly 22%.

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