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Health Care Sector Update for 04/24/2017: JNJ,NVS,BCR,AKTX,BDX

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Top Health Care Stocks

JNJ +0.91%

PFE +0.34%

MRK +1.52%

ABT +0.37%

AMGN +1.86%

Health care stocks put up big gains today, with the NYSE Health Care Index climbing almost 1.3% while shares of health care companies in the S&P 500 were up nearly 1.1% as a group.

In company news, Johnson & Johnson ( JNJ ) was higher in late Monday trading, rising about 1%, following reports the health care conglomerate is talking with overseas rivals Norartis ( NVS ) and Takeda Pharmaceuticals about a potential joint purchase of a controling stake in Brazilian drugmaker Hypermarcas SA.

Families owning investment outfits Igarapava Participacoes SA and Maiorem SA de CV, which together now own 34% of Hypermarcas, have hired Banco Bradesco SA and Credit Suisse Group AG to advise on a possible sale, two people with knowledge of the matter told Reuters today.

The buyout interest comes after Hypermarcas sold off its cosmetics, condoms and diapers divisions over the past two years, raising about $1.5 billion that it used to pay down debt and focused on its pharmaceuticals business.

NVS American depository shares also were higher Monday afternoon, rising nearly 2% to stay within 7 cents of today's session high of $74.60 a share.

In other sector news,

(+) BCR, Agrees to $24 bln takeover offer from Becton Dickinson ( BDX ), which will pay $317 for each C.R. Bard share in cash and stock. Also reports Q1 EPS of $2.87, beating Street by $0.22 per share. Revenue rises 7.5% to $938.8 mln, topping the $916.15 mln consensus.

(-) AKTX, Presents positive response for coversin drug candidate during ongoing Phase II testing and in additional clinical targets; interim Phase 2 PNH data demonstrate positive response with Coversin. Updates new molecules pipeline.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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