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18/10/2021

AstraZeneca share price on the stock market

Lately, Astrazeneca has been in the spotlight, particularly with regard to its controversial vaccine. But interest in this British-Swedish pharmaceutical group goes back a long way. In this guide, find out more about the company to help you decide whether or not to invest in its stock.

History of AstraZeneca

Founded in 1999, AstraZeneca is a pillar of the pharmaceutical industry. This company was born from the merger of two groups: the British company Zeneca and the Swedish company Astra. At its head is the famous businessman Pascal Soriot.

The company develops medicines that are available on the world market. The quality of its products is one of the reasons behind its success, making its stock appealing to investors compared to its competitors. In March 2021, studies reported an increase of more than 3.6% of this share on the London Stock Exchange.

AstraZeneca’s business lines are categorized according to its products and the revenue they generate.

AstraZeneca's activities

The company focuses its activities on the research of effective treatment for several different afflictions. These include :

  • Metabolic and cardiovascular pathologies: products in this field represent 35.3% of the company's sales.
  • Respiratory diseases: the marketing of these drugs is equivalent to 20.7% of the company's revenue. 
  • Oncology: oncology drugs make up 14.7% of  revenue.

22% of the company's sales are generated from treatments for autoimmune, inflammatory, gastrointestinal, neurological and infectious diseases. 

The remainder of the turnover comes from studies and research services conducted by AstraZeneca for other organizations.

To date, the company has achieved significant sales in the Americas, accounting for almost 40% of the total sales 

Introduction and quotation of AstraZeneca shares

AstraZeneca stock has been on a rollercoaster ride since 2008. 

  • Stock fell to 1879 GBX in March 2008 due to the international economic crisis. 
  • In November of the same year, the stock rose to GBX 2888 after a few corrective movements. 
  • In March of the following year, the stock fell back to GBX 2147. From then on, the stock has tended to rise and stabilize with a few micro-moves. 
  • In November 2010, it reached GBX 3379. Another decline caused AstraZeneca stock to drop to GBX 2670 in June 2012. 
  • In April 2014, a significant rise propelled the stock to GBX 4800 
  • In April 2015, it reached GBX 4847 
  • Another decline was noted in June 2016, causing stock to fall to GBX 3793 
  • In August 2016, a dramatic rise from GBX 5105 was followed by a drop to GBX 4055 in December. 
  • In June 2017, the stock reached GBX 4337 to be worth 4447 in August. 

Factors likely to influence AstraZeneca share prices

AstraZeneca has a lot of potential. However, despite its reputation, there are many factors that could impact its share price. These include :

  • The development of the company's activities on an international level and in emerging markets, 
  • The company’'s innovations in various sectors, including the biostimulator sector, 
  • The aging of the world's population, as the company relies on this criterion to optimize its growth, 
  • Generic drugs, which compete with the company's patents, 
  • Laws and regulations governing the drug sales market, 
  • Increasingly tough competition.

AstraZeneca's competitors

AstraZeneca has many competitors in the pharmaceutical industry. In this sector, the group is in eighth place. It shares the stage with :

  • The Swiss group Novartis, which ranks first 
  • The American company Pfizer in second place
  • The Swiss company Roche in third place 
  • The French company Sanofi in fourth place 
  • The American giant Merck in fifth place 

Advantages and disadvantages of AstraZeneca stock

As Astrazeneca stock has been at the center of the Covid-19 vaccination campaign since 2020, it continues to attract investor interest. 

The company is active in various strategic and emerging markets. It employs up to 60,000 people worldwide. It invests in research and development and remains at the forefront of innovation.

The main downside is that the company is often plagued by drug shortages, a fact that tarnishes its brand image. The patents on some of its drugs are about to expire, which could enable the competition to gain market share. 

Regulations and guidelines on clinical trial validation sometimes negatively impact AstraZeneca's sales. 

Finally, it is not uncommon for the group to run into trouble with the law because of price concerns.

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