President Obama said he will not give in to Republican attempts to delay Obamacare by another year. Similarly, investors aren’t allowing today’s opening of online public healthcare exchanges scare them away from healthcare stocks.
Most large-cap healthcare stocks were up today. Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) and Eli Lilly (NYSE: LLY) were up roughly half a percent. Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE: BMY) jumped 1.5%, while Express Scripts (NYSE: ESRX) gained 1%.
Several small-cap pharmaceutical companies such as Salix (Nasdaq: SLXP), Celldex (Nasdaq: CLDX) and Pacira (Nasdaq: PCRX) had even bigger days, all gaining more than 5%.
Not all healthcare stocks were up today, however. In fact, many of them fell. The NYSE Healthcare Sector Index declined 0.2%, with shares of healthcare stocks listed in the S&P 500 also falling 0.2%. By comparison, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.4%, the S&P 500 0.8% and the Nasdaq a whopping 1.2%.
Considering Obamacare is bad for business for much of the healthcare industry, a slight drop in healthcare stocks the day the law’s wheels were set in motion isn’t much for investors in the sector to fret about.