Sector Snap: Generic drugmakers downgraded

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NEW YORK (AP) — A Goldman Sachs analyst said Friday he expects shares of generic drugmakers, which outperformed the market in 2009, to post more moderate results in 2010, and he downgraded the sector to “Neutral” from “Attractive.”

While Randall Stanicky expects sales of low-cost generics to keep growing, he thinks stocks in other health care industries such as managed care will perform better this year.

Stanicky lowered his ratings on Mylan Inc. and Impax Laboratories Inc. to “Neutral” from “Buy” and took both off the Americas Buy list of recommended stocks.

The analyst said Wall Street expectations for Mylan have been rising, helping boost the stock about 15 percent in the past two years and leaving less room for the stock to trade higher. He kept a price target of $20 on the stock and raised his target on Impax shares to $15 from $13.

In midday trading, shares of Pittsburgh-based Mylan lost 86 cents, or 4.8 percent, to $17.17, and Hayward, Calif.-based Impax declined 64 cents, or 4.5 percent, to $13.55.

Stanicky kept a “Buy” rating on the largest maker of generic drugs, Israel-based Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. saying the stock is one of his top picks. He kept “Neutral” ratings on Perrigo Co., BioVail Corp., and Par Pharmaceutical Cos., with a “Sell” rating on Watson Pharmaceuticals Inc.

Teva shares rose $1.80, or 3.2 percent, to $58.64, while other stocks traded lower.