Back to school, repeating the same class
After rebounding strongly in July from the prior month lows, markets took a breather in August, held back by the FED’s repeated warnings of rising interest rates. The fact that Jerome Powell’s Jackson Hole speech hinted at a possible recession, although not unexpected, only added to market nervousness. Healthcare equities shed 6.0% in August and global equities lost 4.2%. The sector’s year-to-date outperformance now stands at 4.8%.
Did you know that R&D expenses of the 15 biggest pharma companies have increased by almost 50% since 2016 to USD 133 bn in 2021? And expenses will continue to increase. Roche alone for example will spend close to CHF 15 bn on R&D in 2022, 1 bn more than in 2021.
We attended the ESMO (European Society for Medical Oncology) annual oncology congress in Paris from Sept. 9-13. We came away very positive from the meeting, though two souls remain in our chest. On one side we see the amazing potential and the opportunities for new oncology therapies. On the other side complexity seems to potentially increase and so does competition in the space. But what to do as an investor? Find some proposals in our ESMO Thoughts from the Street.
September is traditionally one of the most important conference months, as second quarter reporting is largely complete and third quarter reporting has not yet started. We attended the 19th annual Goldman Sachs European Medtech and HC Services Conference 2022, held in London on September 7-8, again in a physical setting. While we remain mindful of all the sector headwinds, we left the conference more convinced that there are selectively attractive investment opportunities at current levels.