Fasten seatbelt for pre-election rollercoaster
In September 2020 the MSCI World Healthcare Net Return (NR) Index returned -1.4%. The MSCI World NR Index decreased by -3.5%. Healthcare extended its outperformance over global equities to 4.6% year-to-date. Over the month, global equities traded choppy. Besides COVID-19 newsflow, the approaching US elections brought some additional volatility to markets. The Healthcare sector, being one of the most politically sensitive sectors, with lot of debates around drug pricing and the Affordable Care Act (ACA), is not new to such trading behaviour before of US elections (see “In the spotlight” on next page).
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.