The Top Stocks Running on the Coronavirus Story

The coronavirus has gone global.

A third infection was just confirmed in California.

The CDC also confirmed a case of the virus in Chicago – and are now monitoring 63 potential cases stretching across 22 states.

“CDC believes the immediate risk to the U.S. public is low at this time, but the situation is evolving rapidly,” Dr. Nancy Messonnier, director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases said, as quoted by CNBC, adding that there is likely to be more cases in coming days. “We have our best people working on this problem.”

In China, while authorities tried to prevent anyone from leaving Wuhan, there’s a problem.  According to Wuhan’s major Zhou Xianwang, “about 5 million residents had already left Wuhan before the lockdown because of the deadly coronavirus and the Spring Festival holiday,” as reported by the South China Morning Post.

Chinese hospitals have been “overwhelmed.” Public transportation is being closed down to prevent the spread. Lunar New Year celebrations have been canceled. Worse, at the moment, 2,000 cases of the virus have now been confirmed globally.

Up to 56 people have now died from the virus.

And yet, the World Health Organization hasn’t declared it to be a public health emergency.

"Now is not the time. It's too early to consider that this event is a public health emergency of international concern," Didier Houssin, chair of the WHO emergency committee said, as quoted by NBC News.

"Make no mistake, this is an emergency in China," said WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. "But it is not yet a global health emergency."

Even though it is an emergency, WHO will be late to the game.

Some of the top stocks running on the story include:

Opportunity No. 1 – Alpha Pro Tech (APT)

APT is seeing a good deal of speculative buying on coronavirus health concerns.  This is one of the companies that manufacturers masks and other protective apparel that are in high demand with the outbreak of the current virus.

Opportunity No. 2 – Inovio Biomedical Corp. (INO)

INO is also gaining traction after receiving a grant of up to $9 million from the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) to develop a vaccine for the coronavirus.  Maxim Group analysts reiterated a buy rating on the stock with a near-term price target of $6 a share. In a note to clients titled, “New coronavirus; who do you call? Inovio,” the firm note that the previously developed vaccine candidates for MERS and Zika was a key reason why CEPI picked Inovio for 2019-nCoV, as reported by MarketWatch.