Forecast 2024: Pharma industry grapples with regulatory hurdles and AI opportunities

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Heading into 2024, the pharma industry finds itself in uncharted waters. On the one hand, the sector’s commitment to R&D investment and innovation output is likely to remain strong, with tools based on AI, automation and real-world data promising more streamlined drug candidate optimization. Additionally, the pharma sector is typically resilient in economic downturns. Financial stability in 2024 is likely to be elusive. While Goldman Sachs remains largely upbeat, analysts at UBS forecast significant economic headwinds for the U.S., including the looming threat of a recession, but characterize the pharma sector as “defensive”  — along with software, staple goods, electric utilities, reinsurance and defense companies.

Several factors, however, could complicate matters. First, the pharma sector continues to grapple with increased regulatory burdens from the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA),…

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