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How to buy AstraZeneca (AZN) shares

Learn how to easily invest in AstraZeneca shares.

AstraZeneca PLC is a drug manufacturers-general business based in the US. AstraZeneca shares (AZN) are listed on the NASDAQ and all prices are listed in US Dollars. AstraZeneca employs 76,100 staff and has a trailing 12-month revenue of around USD$29.5 billion.

How to buy shares in AstraZeneca

  1. Compare share trading platforms. Use our comparison table to help you find a platform that fits you.
  2. Open your brokerage account. Complete an application with your details.
  3. Confirm your payment details. Fund your account.
  4. Research the stock. Find the stock by name or ticker symbol – AZN – and research it before deciding if it's a good investment for you.
  5. Purchase now or later. Buy your desired number of shares with a market order or use a limit order to delay your purchase until the stock reaches a desired price.
  6. Check in on your investment. Optimize your portfolio by tracking your stock.

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How has Coronavirus impacted AstraZeneca's stock price?

Since the stock market crash in March caused by coronavirus, AstraZeneca's stock price has had significant positive movement.

Its last market close was $60.22, which is 16.69% up on its pre-crash value of $50.17 and 66.58% up on the lowest point reached during the March crash when the stocks fell as low as $36.15.

If you had bought $1,000 worth of AstraZeneca stocks at the start of February 2020, those stocks would have been worth $799.26 at the bottom of the March crash, and if you held on to them, then as of the last market close they'd be worth $1,241.13.

Is it a good time to buy AstraZeneca stock?

The technical analysis gauge below displays real-time ratings for the timeframes you select. This is not a recommendation, however. It represents a technical analysis based on the most popular technical indicators: Moving Averages, Oscillators and Pivots. Finder might not concur and takes no responsibility.

AstraZeneca shares at a glance

Information last updated 2021-10-15.
Latest market close$60.22
52-week range$46.11 - $61.34
50-day moving average $58.70
200-day moving average $56.67
Wall St. target price$69.28
PE ratio 41.5674
Dividend yield $2.8 (4.63%)
Earnings per share (TTM) $1.44

AstraZeneca stock price (NASDAQ: AZN)

Use our graph to track the performance of AZN stocks over time.

AstraZeneca price performance over time

Historical closes compared with the close of $60.22 from 2021-10-15

1 week (2021-10-11) -0.95%
1 month (2021-09-17) 8.39%
3 months (2021-07-16) 6.04%
6 months (2021-04-16) 18.68%
1 year (2020-10-16) 13.56%
2 years (2019-10-18) 37.27%
3 years (2018-10-18) 54.61%
5 years (2016-10-18) 92.58%

Is AstraZeneca under- or over-valued?

Valuing AstraZeneca stock is incredibly difficult, and any metric has to be viewed as part of a bigger picture of AstraZeneca's overall performance. However, analysts commonly use some key metrics to help gauge the value of a stock.

AstraZeneca's P/E ratio

AstraZeneca's current share price divided by its per-share earnings (EPS) over a 12-month period gives a "trailing price/earnings ratio" of roughly 42x. In other words, AstraZeneca shares trade at around 42x recent earnings.

That's relatively high compared to, say, the trailing 12-month P/E ratio for the NASDAQ 100 at the end of 2019 (27.29). The high P/E ratio could mean that investors are optimistic about the outlook for the shares or simply that they're over-valued.

AstraZeneca's PEG ratio

AstraZeneca's "price/earnings-to-growth ratio" can be calculated by dividing its P/E ratio by its growth – to give 0.9946. A low ratio can be interpreted as meaning the shares offer better value, while a higher ratio can be interpreted as meaning the shares offer worse value.

The PEG ratio provides a broader view than just the P/E ratio, as it gives more insight into AstraZeneca's future profitability. By accounting for growth, it could also help you if you're comparing the share prices of multiple high-growth companies.

AstraZeneca's EBITDA

AstraZeneca's EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation) is $6.6 billion.

The EBITDA is a measure of a AstraZeneca's overall financial performance and is widely used to measure a its profitability.

AstraZeneca financials

Revenue TTM $29.5 billion
Operating margin TTM 13.41%
Gross profit TTM $21.4 billion
Return on assets TTM 3.7%
Return on equity TTM 25.68%
Profit margin 12.77%
Book value $5.97
Market capitalisation $185.4 billion

TTM: trailing 12 months

Shorting AstraZeneca shares

There are currently 7.2 million AstraZeneca shares held short by investors – that's known as AstraZeneca's "short interest". This figure is 9.5% up from 6.5 million last month.

There are a few different ways that this level of interest in shorting AstraZeneca shares can be evaluated.

AstraZeneca's "short interest ratio" (SIR)

AstraZeneca's "short interest ratio" (SIR) is the quantity of AstraZeneca shares currently shorted divided by the average quantity of AstraZeneca shares traded daily (recently around 6.3 million). AstraZeneca's SIR currently stands at 1.14. In other words for every 100,000 AstraZeneca shares traded daily on the market, roughly 1140 shares are currently held short.

However AstraZeneca's short interest can also be evaluated against the total number of AstraZeneca shares, or, against the total number of tradable AstraZeneca shares (the shares that aren't held by "insiders" or major long-term shareholders – also known as the "float"). In this case AstraZeneca's short interest could be expressed as 0% of the outstanding shares (for every 100,000 AstraZeneca shares in existence, roughly 0 shares are currently held short) or 0.0027% of the tradable shares (for every 100,000 tradable AstraZeneca shares, roughly 3 shares are currently held short).

Such a low SIR usually points to an optimistic outlook for the share price, with fewer people currently willing to bet against AstraZeneca.

AstraZeneca share dividends

62%

Dividend payout ratio: 61.54% of net profits

Recently AstraZeneca has paid out, on average, around 61.54% of net profits as dividends. That has enabled analysts to estimate a "forward annual dividend yield" of 2.32% of the current stock value. This means that over a year, based on recent payouts (which are sadly no guarantee of future payouts), AstraZeneca shareholders could enjoy a 2.32% return on their shares, in the form of dividend payments. In AstraZeneca's case, that would currently equate to about $2.8 per share.

AstraZeneca's payout ratio would broadly be considered high, and as such this stock could appeal to those looking to generate an income. Bear in mind however that companies should normally also look to re-invest a decent amount of net profits to ensure future growth.

AstraZeneca's most recent dividend payout was on 12 September 2021. The latest dividend was paid out to all shareholders who bought their shares by 11 August 2021 (the "ex-dividend date").

Have AstraZeneca's shares ever split?

AstraZeneca's shares were split on a 2:1 basis on 26 July 2015. So if you had owned 1 share the day before before the split, the next day you'd have owned 2 shares. This wouldn't directly have changed the overall worth of your AstraZeneca shares – just the quantity. However, indirectly, the new 50% lower share price could have impacted the market appetite for AstraZeneca shares which in turn could have impacted AstraZeneca's share price.

AstraZeneca share price volatility

Over the last 12 months, AstraZeneca's shares have ranged in value from as little as $46.1106 up to $61.34. A popular way to gauge a stock's volatility is its "beta".

Beta is a measure of a share's volatility in relation to the market. The market (NASDAQ average) beta is 1, while AstraZeneca's is 0.1778. This would suggest that AstraZeneca's shares are less volatile than average (for this exchange).

AstraZeneca overview

AstraZeneca PLC discovers, develops, manufactures, and commercializes prescription medicines in the areas of oncology, cardiovascular, renal and metabolism, respiratory, infection, neuroscience, and gastroenterology worldwide. The company's marketed products include Tagrisso, Lynparza, Imfinzi, Enhertu, Koselugo, Lumoxiti, Equidacent, Zoladex, Faslodex, Iressa, Arimidex, Casodex/Cosudex, and others for oncology diseases; Onglyza, Bydureon, Lokelma, Byetta, Qtern, Symlin, and others for cardiovascular, renal, and metabolism diseases; and Symbicort, Pulmicort, Fasenra, Daliresp/Daxas, Duaklir, Tudorza/Eklira, Bevespi, Breztri, Anifrolumab, and others for respiratory and immunology diseases. It also offers other medicines and COVID-19 products, including Synagis, Fluenz Tetra/FluMist Quadrivalent, Seroquel IR/Seroquel XR, Vimovo, Movantik/Moventig, Nexium, Losec/Prilosec, and COVID-19 Vaccine AstraZeneca. The company serves primary care and specialty care physicians through distributors and local representative offices. It has a collaboration agreement with Daiichi Sankyo to develop and commercialize DS-1062 for the treatment of trophoblast cell-surface antigen 2 (TROP2) tumor; AliveCor, Inc. to develop non-invasive potassium monitoring solutions; Massachusetts General Hospital to accelerate digital health solutions; Sanguina on smartphone application study for hemoglobin management in patients with anemia of chronic kidney disease; Alchemab to enhance prostate cancer research; and Proteros biostructures GmbH to discover and develop novel small molecules for the treatment of various types of cancer. The company was formerly known as Zeneca Group PLC and changed its name to AstraZeneca PLC in April 1999.

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