AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (AZN): Is It The Ultimate Stock Picker’s Share?

LONDON — I use a market statistics to identify shares for further research. Whatever the market conditions, stock-picking software will always identify a share worth buying.

AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (NYSE:AZN) is the 12th biggest company in the FTSE 100. It is a true blue chip. According to a large number of investment strategies, the shares should be bought today.

What’s to love?
AstraZeneca shares satisfy selection criteria that makes them attractive to three different types of investor. AstraZeneca currently ticks the boxes for value, income, and momentum strategies.

A value play
Investors have long been skeptical of the company’s ability to develop new drugs. Perhaps as a result of this, AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (NYSE:AZN) shares made no progress at all in the three years ending 2012.

AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (NYSE:AZN)Today, AstraZeneca trades on a 2013 P/E of just 9.6 times 2013 forecasts. AstraZeneca’s rating is in the bottom 10% of the entire index. Low valuations like that are usually the result of masses of negative sentiment.

If AstraZeneca can convince the markets that its earnings are not about to enter a prolonged decline, then I would expect the shares to rise significantly.

Income credentials
According to the consensus of broker forecasts, AstraZeneca plc (ADR) (NYSE:AZN) trades on a prospective yield for 2013 of 5.5%. The 2014 forecast dividend yield amounts to an impressive 5.6%. The payout is almost twice covered by earnings, meaning that there is little risk of a cut.