Omicron scare: WHO issues warning, healthcare stocks to invest in

Highlights 

  • Initially detected in South Africa, the new Covid variant Omricon has created panic worldwide due to higher risk of re-infections.
  • Boosting the vaccine accessibility for poor countries has again been called for by WHO.
  • To prevent a new wave of infections, the UK is all set to offer Covid booster jabs to people aged over 18.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has sent a warning regarding the high risk of re-infection due to the new variant of coronavirus, Omicron, spreading across the globe. The covid strain, which was initially detected in South-Africa, has created panic worldwide, and could potentially have a catastrophic impact on certain regions. Boosting the vaccine accessibility for poor countries has again been called for by WHO’s head Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. As per WHO, the pandemic’s trajectory could potentially be impacted due to the new variant as it has an unparalleled number of spike mutations leading to higher risk of transmission. 

An increasing number of countries have been reporting cases related to the new variant and thus travel restrictions are being imposed by countries yet again, and some of them are completely shutting down their borders for inbound foreign nationals. To prevent a new wave of infections, the UK is all set to offer Covid booster jabs to people aged over 18. Many pharmaceutical companies across the globe, such as the US drugmakers Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson, have already started targeting the Omicron variant by testing new vaccine formulas to prevent the next global wave of infections.

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The new Covid variant is likely to impact the pharmaceutical and healthcare industry globally.

Here are 5 UK pharma stocks that may be impacted by the news.

 Covid-19 vaccine candidate

Source: Copyright © 2021 Kalkine Media

AstraZeneca plc (LON: AZN)

AstraZeneca plc needs no introduction. The current market cap of the FTSE100-listed company stands at £129,617.12 million. It has given a return of 7.68% to its shareholders in the last one year and its YTD return stands at 14.24% as of 29 November. AstraZeneca plc’s shares were trading at GBX 8,367.00 as of 29 November 2021 (GMT).

GlaxoSmithKline plc (LON: GSK)

GlaxoSmithKline plc’s current market cap is £76,734.30 million. It has given a return of 10.22% to its shareholders in the last one year and its YTD return stands at 13.64% as of 29 November. GlaxoSmithKline plc’s shares were trading at GBX 1,525.00 as of 29 November 2021 (GMT).

Oxford BioMedica plc (LON: OXB)

Oxford BioMedica plc’s current market cap stands at £1,167.36 million. It has given a return of 56.76% to its shareholders in the last one year and its YTD return stands at 31.65% as of 29 November. Oxford BioMedica plc’s shares were trading at GBX 1,356.00 as of 29 November 2021 (GMT).  

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Abcam Plc (LON: ABC)

Abcam Plc’s market cap stands at £3,880.05 million and it is a constituent of the FTSE AIM UK 50 Index. It has given a return of 20.45% to its shareholders in the last one year and its YTD return stands at 9.42% as of 29 November. Abcam plc’s shares were trading at GBX 1,356.00 as of 29 November 2021 (GMT).  

Clinigen Group PLC (LON: CLIN)

Clinigen Group PLC is a UK-based pharmaceutical firm providing global accessibility to medicines. The current market cap of the company stands at £796.87 million, and it is a constituent of the FTSE AIM UK 50 Index. It has given a negative return of 6.86% to its shareholders in the last one year. Clinigen Group PLC’s shares were trading at GBX 597.50 as of 29 November 2021 (GMT).

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