In the first of a video series on the scientific and investment implications of the coronavirus pandemic, Global Life Sciences Portfolio Manager Andy Acker and Biotech Analyst Agustin Mohedas discuss recent developments made to curtail the spread of COVID-19 and how they view the timeline for an eventual return to normalcy in the global economy.

  Key Takeaways

  • Some models follow a four-phase road map to economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. To limit the spread of COVID-19 and move through these phases, clinical testing will be essential, particularly as many individuals carry the virus without showing symptoms.
  • The scientific community currently has multiple types of treatments and vaccines in development, but we will likely have to wait until mid-2020 before any therapeutics are available and until the second half of 2021 for an approved vaccine.
  • While the most acute phase of the pandemic may soon be behind us, we believe it is unrealistic to expect economic activity to return to normal levels in the near term, and we attribute recent market rallies to an overly optimistic outlook.
  • We have seen a substantial pullback in the healthcare sector, which we think has created more attractive valuations in the space. At the same time, some areas of healthcare are proving resilient, including pharmaceuticals that provide mail-order medication or injectables, such as insulin. Other areas, such as medical devices, could see demand rebound quickly once social-distancing measures begin to ease.