Investors eye discounted U.S. healthcare sector as Biden’s lead in polls grows

By Lewis Krauskopf



FILE PHOTO: Pharmaceutical tablets and capsules are arranged on a table in this picture illustration taken in Ljubljana


© Reuters/Srdjan Zivulovic
FILE PHOTO: Pharmaceutical tablets and capsules are arranged on a table in this picture illustration taken in Ljubljana

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Investors are looking for bargains among healthcare stocks, even as prospect of a Democratic “Blue Sweep” in next month’s elections threatens more volatility for a sector already trading near a historical discount to the broader market.

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A victory by former Vice President Joe Biden over President Donald Trump on Nov. 3 and a potential Democratic takeover of the Senate could clear the way for prescription drug price and healthcare coverage reforms, generally seen as potential negatives for companies in the sector.

Some investors are betting these factors have already been priced into healthcare shares or may not be as detrimental as feared, while the companies stand to benefit from relatively stable earnings prospects and their medical innovations.

“For high-quality companies

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Cramer downplays market drop on Trump’s coronavirus, says investors should ready a buy list

  • “I’m not saying this is much to do about nothing, I am saying that people should have a buy list ready,” CNBC’s Jim Cramer said Friday after President Trump’s positive coronavirus test. 
  • Stock futures were sharply lower following the overnight announcement. 
  • The “Mad Money” host said that he hopes more Americans wear masks to prevent transmission of the virus.



Jim Cramer wearing a suit and tie


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CNBC’s Jim Cramer on Friday downplayed the stock market decline on President Donald Trump testing positive for the coronavirus, suggesting investors may want to consider buying on pullbacks.

“I’m not saying this is much to do about nothing,” Cramer said on “Squawk Box.” “I am saying that people should have a buy list ready.”

Stock futures were sharply lower Friday morning as Wall Street digested the news that Trump and the first lady, Melania Trump, tested positive for the coronavirus.

early

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Should Peloton Investors Worry About Apple’s New Fitness Service?

Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) recently unveiled Apple Fitness+ as the latest addition to its suite of subscription services. Demand for interactive fitness services is booming, as evidenced by Peloton Interactive‘s (NASDAQ: PTON) explosive growth over the last year. With a large installed base of active devices, Apple could gain traction quickly in this market. Should Peloton investors be concerned?



a person sitting at a table using a laptop: Should Peloton Investors Worry About Apple's New Fitness Service?


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Should Peloton Investors Worry About Apple’s New Fitness Service?

Apple joins a crowded market

Peloton still makes most of its money from selling exercise equipment. Subscription revenue made up 20% of its top line in fiscal 2020 (which ended June 30). This amount includes the $39 per month fee that users pay to access workout programs on their Peloton Bike or Tread. It also includes the $12.99 per month fee members pay to access workout programs through the Peloton digital app.



A woman exercising at home.


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Investors Extracted $400 Million From a Hospital Chain That Sometimes Couldn’t Pay for Medical Supplies or Gas for Ambulances

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In the decade since Leonard Green & Partners, a private equity firm based in Los Angeles, bought control of a hospital company named Prospect Medical Holdings for $205 million, the owners have done handsomely.

Leonard Green extracted $400 million in dividends and fees for itself and investors in its fund — not from profits, but by loading up the company with debt. Prospect CEO Sam Lee, who owns about 20% of the chain, made $128 million while expanding the company from five hospitals in California to 17 across the country. A second executive with an ownership stake took home $94 million.

The deal hasn’t worked out quite as well for Prospect’s patients, many of whom have low incomes. (The company says

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