How to buy AstraZeneca shares

Own AstraZeneca shares in just a few minutes.

Updated

Fact checked
Picture not described

We’re reader-supported and may be paid when you visit links to partner sites. We don’t compare all products in the market, but we’re working on it!

AstraZeneca PLC (AZN) is a leading drug manufacturers-general business with stocks listed in the US. It opened the day at 51.29 after a previous close of US$51.29. During the day the price has varied from a low of USD51.13 to a high of USD51.56. The latest price was USD51.34 (25 minute delay). AstraZeneca is listed on the NASDAQ. All prices are listed in US Dollars.

How to buy shares in AstraZeneca

  1. Compare share trading platforms. To buy shares in a US company from Australia you'll need to find a trading platform that offers access to US stock markets. If you're just starting out, look for a platform with low brokerage and foreign exchange fees.
  2. Open and fund your brokerage account. Complete an application with your personal and financial details, like your ID and tax file number. Fund your account with a bank transfer, credit card or debit card.
  3. Search for AstraZeneca. Find the share by name or ticker symbol: AZN. Research its history to confirm it's a solid investment against your financial goals.
  4. Purchase now or later. Buy today with a market order or use a limit order to delay your purchase until AstraZeneca reaches your desired price. To spread out your risk, look into dollar-cost averaging, which smooths out buying at consistent intervals and amounts.
  5. Decide on how many to buy. At last close price of US$56.29, weigh your budget against a diversified portfolio that can minimise risk through the market's ups and downs. You may be able to buy a fractional share of AstraZeneca, depending on your broker.
  6. Check in on your investment. Congratulations, you own a part of AstraZeneca. Optimise your portfolio by tracking how your stock — and even the business — performs with an eye on the long term. You may be eligible for dividends and shareholder voting rights on directors and management that can affect your stock.

How has coronavirus impacted AstraZeneca's share price?

Since the stock market crash in March caused by coronavirus, AstraZeneca's share price has had significant positive movement.

Its last market close was US$56.29, which is 10.87% up on its pre-crash value of US$50.17 and 55.71% up on the lowest point reached during the March crash when the shares fell as low as US$36.15.

If you had bought US$1,000 worth of AstraZeneca shares at the start of February 2020, those shares would have been worth US$799.26 at the bottom of the March crash, and if you held on to them, then as of the last market close they'd be worth US$1,160.14.

AstraZeneca share price

Use our graph to track the performance of AZN stocks over time.

AstraZeneca shares at a glance

Information last updated 2021-01-15.
OpenUS$51.29
HighUS$51.56
LowUS$51.13
CloseUS$51.34
Previous closeUS$51.29
Change US$0.05
Change % 0.097%
Volume 9,523,952
Information last updated 2021-01-12.
52-week rangeUS$35.8633 - US$64.425
50-day moving average US$51.5809
200-day moving average US$54.0934
Target priceUS$62.48
PE ratio 53.2211
Dividend yield US$1.4 (2.77%)
Earnings per share (TTM) US$0.95

Get $0 brokerage on US stocks with trades as little as $50 when you join the world’s biggest social trading network.

eToro Share Trading (US stocks)

USD 0

Standard brokerage - US shares

Get $0 brokerage on US stocks with trades as little as $50 when you join the world’s biggest social trading network.

  • $0 brokerage for US stocks
  • Trades starting from $50
  • Fractional shares
  • Copy top traders
Go to site
More info

Important: Share trading carries risk of capital loss.

Promoted

Compare share trading platforms

The value of your investments can fall as well as rise and you may get back less than you invested. Past performance is no indication of future results.
Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Standard brokerage for US shares Inactivity fee Currency conversion fee Markets
eToro Share Trading (US stocks)
USD 0
USD 10 per month if there’s been no login for 12 months
0.50%
Forex, CFDs, US shares
Zero brokerage share trading on US stocks with trades as low as $50.
Note: This broker offers CFDs which are volatile investment products and most clients lose money trading CFDs with this provider.
Join the world’s biggest social trading network when you trade stocks, commodities and forex from the one account.
IG Share Trading
Finder Award
IG Share Trading
USD 0
AUD 50 per quarter if you make fewer than three trades in that period
0.70%
ASX shares, Global shares, Forex, CFDs, Margin trading
$0 brokerage for US and global shares plus get an active trader discount of $5 commission on Australian shares.
Enjoy some of the lowest brokerage fees on the market when trading Australian shares, international shares, forex and CFDs, plus get access to 24-hour customer support.
CMC Markets Stockbroking
USD 0
No
0.60%
ASX shares, Global shares, Forex, CFDs, Margin trading, Options trading, mFunds
$0 brokerage on global shares including US, UK and Japan markets.
Trade up to 9,000 products, including shares, managed funds, forex, commodities and cryptocurrencies, plus access up to 15 major global and Australian stock exchanges.
loading

Compare up to 4 providers

Is it a good time to buy AstraZeneca stock?

The technical analysis gauge below displays real-time ratings for the timeframes you select. This is not a recommendation, however. It represents a technical analysis based on the most popular technical indicators: Moving Averages, Oscillators and Pivots. Finder might not concur and takes no responsibility.

AstraZeneca price performance over time

Historical closes compared with the close of $51.34 on 2020-11-16

1 week (2021-01-08) 0.94%
1 month (2020-12-16) 0.81%
3 months (2020-10-16) -3.19%
6 months (2020-07-16) -10.60%
1 year (2020-01-16) 1.64%
2 years (2019-01-16) 43.45%
3 years (2018-01-16) 46.73%
5 years (2016-01-15) 67.83%

Is AstraZeneca under- or over-valued?

Valuing AstraZeneca stock is incredibly difficult, and any metric has to be viewed as part of a bigger picture of AstraZeneca's overall performance. However, analysts commonly use some key metrics to help gauge the value of a stock.

AstraZeneca's P/E ratio

AstraZeneca's current share price divided by its per-share earnings (EPS) over a 12-month period gives a "trailing price/earnings ratio" of roughly 53x. In other words, AstraZeneca shares trade at around 53x recent earnings.

That's relatively high compared to, say, the trailing 12-month P/E ratio for the NASDAQ 100 at the end of 2019 (27.29). The high P/E ratio could mean that investors are optimistic about the outlook for the shares or simply that they're over-valued.

AstraZeneca's PEG ratio

AstraZeneca's "price/earnings-to-growth ratio" can be calculated by dividing its P/E ratio by its growth – to give 1.1357. A low ratio can be interpreted as meaning the shares offer better value, while a higher ratio can be interpreted as meaning the shares offer worse value.

The PEG ratio provides a broader view than just the P/E ratio, as it gives more insight into AstraZeneca's future profitability. By accounting for growth, it could also help you if you're comparing the share prices of multiple high-growth companies.

AstraZeneca's EBITDA

AstraZeneca's EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation) is US$7.7 billion (£5.7 billion).

The EBITDA is a measure of a AstraZeneca's overall financial performance and is widely used to measure a its profitability.

AstraZeneca financials

Revenue TTM US$25.9 billion
Operating margin TTM 19.86%
Gross profit TTM US$19.5 billion
Return on assets TTM 5.22%
Return on equity TTM 17.71%
Profit margin 9.65%
Book value 4.6475
Market capitalisation US$134 billion

TTM: trailing 12 months

Shorting AstraZeneca shares

There are currently 3.5 million AstraZeneca shares held short by investors – that's known as AstraZeneca's "short interest". This figure is 20.7% down from 4.4 million last month.

There are a few different ways that this level of interest in shorting AstraZeneca shares can be evaluated.

AstraZeneca's "short interest ratio" (SIR)

AstraZeneca's "short interest ratio" (SIR) is the quantity of AstraZeneca shares currently shorted divided by the average quantity of AstraZeneca shares traded daily (recently around 11.2 million). AstraZeneca's SIR currently stands at 0.31. In other words for every 100,000 AstraZeneca shares traded daily on the market, roughly 310 shares are currently held short.

However AstraZeneca's short interest can also be evaluated against the total number of AstraZeneca shares, or, against the total number of tradable AstraZeneca shares (the shares that aren't held by "insiders" or major long-term shareholders – also known as the "float"). In this case AstraZeneca's short interest could be expressed as 0% of the outstanding shares (for every 100,000 AstraZeneca shares in existence, roughly 0 shares are currently held short) or 0% of the tradable shares (for every 100,000 tradable AstraZeneca shares, roughly 0 shares are currently held short).

Such a low SIR usually points to an optimistic outlook for the share price, with fewer people currently willing to bet against AstraZeneca.

Find out more about how you can short AstraZeneca stock.

AstraZeneca share dividends

73%

Dividend payout ratio: 72.92% of net profits

Recently AstraZeneca has paid out, on average, around 72.92% of net profits as dividends. That has enabled analysts to estimate a "forward annual dividend yield" of 2.77% of the current stock value. This means that over a year, based on recent payouts (which are sadly no guarantee of future payouts), AstraZeneca shareholders could enjoy a 2.77% return on their shares, in the form of dividend payments. In AstraZeneca's case, that would currently equate to about $1.4 per share.

AstraZeneca's payout ratio would broadly be considered high, and as such this stock could appeal to those looking to generate an income. Bear in mind however that companies should normally also look to re-invest a decent amount of net profits to ensure future growth.

AstraZeneca's most recent dividend payout was on 14 September 2020. The latest dividend was paid out to all shareholders who bought their shares by 13 August 2020 (the "ex-dividend date").

Have AstraZeneca's shares ever split?

AstraZeneca's shares were split on a 2:1 basis on 27 July 2015. So if you had owned 1 share the day before before the split, the next day you'd have owned 2 shares. This wouldn't directly have changed the overall worth of your AstraZeneca shares – just the quantity. However, indirectly, the new 50% lower share price could have impacted the market appetite for AstraZeneca shares which in turn could have impacted AstraZeneca's share price.

AstraZeneca share price volatility

Over the last 12 months, AstraZeneca's shares have ranged in value from as little as US$35.8633 up to US$64.425. A popular way to gauge a stock's volatility is its "beta".

Beta is a measure of a share's volatility in relation to the market. The market (NASDAQ average) beta is 1, while AstraZeneca's is 0.2063. This would suggest that AstraZeneca's shares are less volatile than average (for this exchange).

AstraZeneca overview

AstraZeneca PLC discovers, develops, and commercializes prescription medicines in the areas of oncology, cardiovascular, renal and metabolism, respiratory, autoimmunity, infection, neuroscience, and gastroenterology worldwide. Its marketed products include Arimidex, Casodex/Cosudex, Calquence, Faslodex, Imfinzi, Iressa, Lynparza, Nolvadex, Tagrisso, and Zoladex for oncology diseases; Atacand/Atacand HCT/Atacand Plus, Brilinta/Brilique, Crestor, Plendil, Seloken/Toprol-XL, Tenormin, and Zestril for cardiovascular diseases; and Bydureon, Byetta, Farxiga/Forxiga, Kombiglyze XR/Komboglyze, Onglyza, Qtern, Symlin, Xigduo/Xigduo XR for metabolic diseases. The company's marketed products also comprise Accolate, Bevespi Aerosphere, Bricanyl Respules, Bricanyl Turbuhaler, Daliresp/Daxas, Duaklir Genuair, Tudorza/Eklira, Fasenra, Oxis Turbuhaler, Pulmicort Turbuhaler/Pulmicort Flexhaler, Pulmicort Respules, Symbicort pMDI, and Symbicort Turbuhaler for respiratory diseases; Fluenz Tetra/FluMist Quadrivalen and Synagis for infection diseases; Movantik/Moventig, Seroquel IR/Seroquel XR, and Vimovo for neuroscience diseases; and Losec/Prilosec and Nexium for gastrointestinal diseases. The company serves primary care and specialty care physicians through distributors and local representative offices. It has a collaboration agreement with Arcus Biosciences, Inc. to evaluate domvanalimab (AB154), an investigational anti-TIGIT antibody in combination with Imfinzi (durvalumab); and Fusion Pharmaceuticals Inc. to develop and commercialize next-generation alpha-emitting radiopharmaceuticals and combination therapies for the treatment of cancer. The company was formerly known as Zeneca Group PLC and changed its name to AstraZeneca PLC in April 1999. AstraZeneca PLC was founded in 1992 and is headquartered in Cambridge, the United Kingdom.

Frequently asked questions

More guides on Finder

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy and Privacy & Cookies Policy.
Go to site