NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwire) -- 11/19/12 -- Major Pharmaceutical firms have performed admirably this year despite facing increased generic competition as a result of major patent expirations. The iShares Dow Jones U.S. Pharmaceuticals Index Fund is up roughly 8.7 percent year-to-date -- more than double the gain of the Dow Jones Industrial Average over the same period. Five Star Equities examines the outlook for companies in the Major Drug Manufacturers Industry and provides equity research on Eli Lilly & Co. (NYSE: LLY) and Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ).
Recently three major drug makers -- Eli Lilly and Co., Johnson & Johnson, and Merck & Co. -- have agreed to collaborate on a database that will help speed up the experimental drug testing process. The companies will each contribute to a database which will consist of doctors, hospitals and clinics dedicated to the testing of experimental medicines. Other pharmaceutical and biotech companies have also been invited to contribute to the database created by J&J's Janssen Research & Development unit.
"The current clinical trial environment is inefficient, costly and unsustainable," said the head of Janssen's clinical trial innovation and external alliances, Dr. Andreas Koester, in a statement. "We are enthusiastic about working with other industry leaders to collectively apply our expertise, capabilities and shared passion for advancing science and improving lives."
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Eli Lilly has recently reported results from a Phase IIb study of baricitinib, an oral drug for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, that showed that the drug helped reduce joint damage. "These data are important because collectively they show patients experienced improvement with baricitinib as early as week two that was sustained through week 24," said Dr. Mark Genovese, co-chief of the division of immunology and rheumatology at Stanford University School of Medicine.
Johnson & Johnson currently offers investors an annual dividend of $2.44 per share for a yield of roughly 3.53 percent. The company in April raised their dividend by 7 percent, which was their 50th consecutive annual increase. The company reported worldwide pharmaceutical sales in the third quarter increased by 7 percent year-over-year.
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