Gilead Sciences has been in the news lately as its drug, remdesivir, is showing progress as a treatment for the coronavirus.
The company reported Wednesday it’s phase three trial of the drug revealed taking the drug in a shorter duration yielded similar results to taking it longer.
That has prompted the Food and Drug Administration to be in “sustained and ongoing” discussions with Gilead Sciences Inc. (Nasdaq: GILD) to make the drug available to COVID-19 patients “as quickly as possible.”
White House health adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci said the latest trial results showed “quite good news” as it indicated a “clear-cut positive effect in diminishing time to recover” from the virus.
With the company poised to report earnings this afternoon, we’ve recommended this stock before and we maintain that Gilead Sciences is a buy for any investor.
Gilead Sciences as a Health Stock to Buy
Before any of the trial news came to light, we recommended Gilead Sciences as one of our “4 Health Care Stocks to Buy” now.
At the time, Gilead was trading 21.5% higher than its January 2020 low. It also hasn’t bounced as dramatically as other stocks.
Since making that recommendation, Gilead — as well as the other stocks we recommended — have seen nice, steady gains. Shares of the company have provided a total adjusted return of more than 11%.
To put a finer point on the overall portfolio, Collplant Holdings Ltd. (Nasdaq: CLGN) is up more than 20%, CVS Health Corp. (NYSE: CVS) is more than 8% higher and Davita Inc. (NYSE: DVA) has gained nearly 8%.
In all, the total average adjusted return for those four picks is nearly 12%.
Gilead is Still a Stock to Buy
But Gilead has made the biggest splash with the biggest potential to do even more.
Shares have jumped more than 43% since December 2018 to around $83.
Fundamentally, the company remains a solid value. Currently, it’s trading with a price-to-earnings ratio of 19.7 — slightly higher than when we recommended it.
But its price to book and price to sales are both a 4.7.
The other thing to factor in is that Gilead will report its earnings for the first quarter after the closing bell today.
Analysts’ consensus estimates are for earnings per share of around $1.44, but I think it will beat that. In the last two quarters, Gilead has surprised estimates, but to the downside. Its earnings were off by minus-30% in Q4 2019 and minus-0.6% in Q3 2019.
If you’re an investor on the fence about buying into Gilead Sciences, you would want to buy in before earnings are released. I would expect an upbeat report quickly followed by more gains in the share price.
Of course, if its drug trial continues to yield positive results, that will also push Gilead Sciences’ stock higher, regardless of its earnings report.
For those who got in when we recommended it, congratulations on your gains.