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Is Novo Nordisk (NVO) Stock Outpacing Its Medical Peers This Year?

For those looking to find strong Medical stocks, it is prudent to search for companies in the group that are outperforming their peers. Novo Nordisk (NVO) is a stock that can certainly grab the attention of many investors, but do its recent returns compare favorably to the sector as a whole? A quick glance at the company's year-to-date performance in comparison to the rest of the Medical sector should help us answer this question.

Novo Nordisk is a member of the Medical sector. This group includes 1182 individual stocks and currently holds a Zacks Sector Rank of #2. The Zacks Sector Rank includes 16 different groups and is listed in order from best to worst in terms of the average Zacks Rank of the individual companies within each of these sectors.

The Zacks Rank emphasizes earnings estimates and estimate revisions to find stocks with improving earnings outlooks. This system has a long record of success, and these stocks tend to be on track to beat the market over the next one to three months. Novo Nordisk is currently sporting a Zacks Rank of #1 (Strong Buy).

Over the past three months, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for NVO's full-year earnings has moved 0.7% higher. This is a sign of improving analyst sentiment and a positive earnings outlook trend.

Our latest available data shows that NVO has returned about 0.7% since the start of the calendar year. Meanwhile, the Medical sector has returned an average of -15.3% on a year-to-date basis. This means that Novo Nordisk is outperforming the sector as a whole this year.

Another Medical stock, which has outperformed the sector so far this year, is Acumen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (ABOS). The stock has returned 6.1% year-to-date.

The consensus estimate for Acumen Pharmaceuticals, Inc.'s current year EPS has increased 0.8% over the past three months. The stock currently has a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

Breaking things down more, Novo Nordisk is a member of the Large Cap Pharmaceuticals industry, which includes 12 individual companies and currently sits at #99 in the Zacks Industry Rank. On average, stocks in this group have gained 14.9% this year, meaning that NVO is slightly underperforming its industry in terms of year-to-date returns.

Acumen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. however, belongs to the Medical - Biomedical and Genetics industry. Currently, this 560-stock industry is ranked #59. The industry has moved -20.4% so far this year.

Novo Nordisk and Acumen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. could continue their solid performance, so investors interested in Medical stocks should continue to pay close attention to these stocks.

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