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Tickers in this Article: BMRN, REGN, TECH, SHPG, AMRN, ALXN, EXEL
It's been a bad day for the market after the morning's trading. The Nasdaq has decreased 0.8%; the S&P 500 is down 1.5%; and the Dow has fallen 1.8%. The healthcare sector is the category of stocks relating to medical and healthcare goods or services. This sector includes hospital management firms, health maintenance organizations (HMOs), biotechnology and a variety of medical products. Stocks in the healthcare sector are often considered to be defensive because the products and services are essential. Even during economic downturns, people will still require medical aid and medicine to overcome illness. Having a consistent demand for goods and services makes this sector less sensitive to business cycle fluctuations.

The Healthcare sector (XLV) is currently lagging behind the overall market, down 1.5%, and its current biggest movers are:
CompanyMarket CapPercentage Change
BioMarin Pharmaceutical (Nasdaq:BMRN)$5.09 billion-5.9%
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:REGN)$15.65 billion-4.3%
Techne (Nasdaq:TECH)$2.56 billion-4.1%
Shire Plc (Nasdaq:SHPG)$16.41 billion-3.6%
Amarin Corporation plc (Nasdaq:AMRN)$1.67 billion+3.3%
Alexion Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:ALXN)$20.08 billion-2.9%
Exelixis (Nasdaq:EXEL)$704.2 million+2.5%
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BioMarin Pharmaceutical (Nasdaq:BMRN) has fallen 5.9% and is currently trading at $38.77 per share. So far today, the company's volume is two million shares, 1.2 times the current daily average.

Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:REGN) is trading at $156 per share, down 4.3%. So far today, the company's volume is 481,320 shares.

Currently trading at $66.76 per share, Techne (Nasdaq:TECH) has fallen 4.1%. So far today, the company's volume is 50,413 shares,.

Falling 3.6%, Shire Plc (Nasdaq:SHPG) is currently at a share price of $84.35. This morning, the company is trading a volume of 152,013 shares. This is in keeping with its current three-month average.

After rising 3.3%, Amarin Corporation plc (Nasdaq:AMRN) is currently trading at a share price of $11.56. So far today, the company's volume is 2.9 million shares, consistent with its current daily average.

Alexion Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:ALXN) is currently trading at a share price of $101.04, a 2.9% decline. The company's volume for the day so far is 994,895 shares.

Increasing 2.5%, Exelixis (Nasdaq:EXEL) is trading at $4.85 per share. At 795,879 shares, the company's volume so far today is lighter than yesterday's volume of 2.1 million shares.

The Bottom Line The nature of the market is such that stocks will have good days and bad days. Paying close attention to the previous ratios will help you identify key times to adjust your strategy. Keep in mind that all these ratios should be compared against historical numbers and industry information in order to get a more complete picture.

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