For immediate release
Chicago, IL – January 4, 2022 – Zacks.com announces the list of stocks featured on the Analysts Blog. Every day, Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and financial markets. Recent actions featured in the blog include: Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. TMO, QIAGEN NV QGEN and Quidel Corp. QDEL, Quest Diagnostics DGX.
Here are highlights from Monday’s analyst blog:
3 diagnostic actions at the heart of the Omicron epidemic
With the new COVID-19 variant, Omicron, on the horizon, the demand for molecular tests, considered the gold standard for diagnosing infectious diseases, has exploded again. The focus is once again on diagnostics as investor attention appears to shift to pharmaceuticals and healthcare as the market reacts to the emergence of Omicron.
According to a Forbes article from December 21, 2021, inventories of diagnostic tests increased by 24% in 2021. The recent increase in the number of new cases, mainly due to the highly contagious variant, strongly authenticates that the demand for COVID- testing 19 will remain in the near to medium term, as the pandemic is proving difficult to contain given the decrease in immunity provided by vaccines and the constant mutation of the virus. In light of this, diagnostic testing will remain essential to contain the spread of COVID-19 and keep the wider economy open.
Here are the three companies Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc., QIAGEN SA and Quidel Corp. which should benefit enormously from the increased demand for testing with the appearance of the new variant.
Recent increase in cases
According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the average number of daily seven-day hospitalizations for children between December 21 and December 27 increased by more than 58% in the United States. Omicron cases are expected to spread faster across the United States with schools reopening.
Increased demand for testing
As Omicron scares the markets, diagnostics companies are scrambling to determine whether the latest mutations will hamper the performance of their drug tests. Many diagnostic companies have said their PCR tests in the COVID-19 market are unaffected by the new strain.
According to a Reuters report, President Joe Biden signed a $ 137 million contract to increase the production capacity of a highly constrained component of rapid coronavirus tests. Earlier this month, the President announced a COVID-19 response plan that includes a major effort to increase rapid home testing. That plan includes opening new federal testing sites to increase capacity and distribute 500 million rapid home tests to Americans.
With the increase in the demand for testing, Quest Diagnosis recently reported the majority of COVID-19 molecular diagnostic test results in one day. The company has performed and reported nearly 64.7 million COVID-19 molecular diagnostic and serology tests since 2020. Additionally, Quest Diagnostics has confirmed that its COVID-19 (PCR / NAAT) and antigenic molecular testing services will detect infection with SARS-CoV-2, including the Omicron variant.
Focus on actions
Based on the aforementioned discussion, diagnostic companies are expected to see a surge in demand for testing in the coming months. Investors can choose to bet on the following stocks which have shown tremendous promise amid the pandemic and difficult market conditions. These stocks also have considerable growth potential.
Thermo Fisher is committed to supporting the global response to the pandemic by monitoring new variants of SARS-CoV-2 and developing innovative, adaptive and resilient testing solutions. The company recently confirmed that its TaqPath COVID-19 Combo Kit and TaqPath COVID-19 CE-IVD RT-PCR Kit, which tests for the presence of SARS-CoV-2, are not impacted by Omicron, test results.
In addition to the original COVID-19 TaqPath tests, Thermo Fisher developed the COVID-19 2.0 TaqPath tests with advanced test design to compensate for emerging mutations. In December 2021, the company launched a significant expansion of the K-12 ReadyCheckGo COVID-19 test solution in Texas. The program, formed under agreement with the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS), is now available to all school districts in the state.
Thermo Fisher currently wears a Zacks Rank # 2 (Buy). Over the past six months, TMO has gained 30% from the industry’s 8.1% rise.
QIAGEN recently confirmed that its polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests remain accurate and effective in detecting SARS-CoV-2 infections in light of the emergence of a new variant. The company noted that its QIAcuity digital PCR solution and QIAprep & Viral RNA kit are reliable in detecting the Omicron variant.
In December 2021, QIAGEN announced the receipt of the CE mark for its QuantiFERON SARS-CoV-2 assay which measures T cell responses to SARS-CoV-2 and helps assess immunity in people who have received a COVID vaccination. -19.
QIAGEN currently wears a Zacks Rank # 3 (Hold). Over the past six months, QGEN has gained 12.2% compared to the industry’s 18.5% decline.
Quidel– A solutions provider of rapid diagnostic tests, cell virology tests and molecular diagnostic systems confirms that its antigen tests continue to detect COVID-19 variants such as Omicron. The company noted that its QuickVue At-Home OTC COVID-19 test and Sofia SARS Antigen FIA detect the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant.
Additionally, in December 2021, Quidel and Ortho Clinical Diagnostics entered into a definitive agreement under which Quidel will acquire Ortho, one of the world’s largest in vitro diagnostics companies. Acquisition will provide Quidel with a broad portfolio of point-of-care diagnostics with access to Ortho’s broad global reach in more than 130 countries, accelerating the growth of Quidel’s existing product portfolio and providing exposure to new markets emerging.
Quidel currently wears a Zacks Rank # 1 (strong buy). Over the past six months, QDEL has gained 7.7% from the industry’s 7.4% drop. You can see The full list of today’s Zacks # 1 Rank stocks here.
Top 10 Zacks stocks for 2022
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Quest Diagnostics Incorporated (DGX): Free Inventory Analysis Report
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QIAGEN NV (QGEN): Free Stock Analysis Report
Quidel Corporation (QDEL): Free Stock Analysis Report
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