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Sonic Healthcare share price climbs after capital raising

The Sonic Healthcare Ltd (ASX: SHL) share price has climbed higher today after the company announced a US$550 million (A$816 million) debt raising.

What are the terms of the capital raising?

Sonic announced that it had priced the US$550 million notes in the United States private placement (USPP) market.

The Aussie healthcare group expects the transaction to close in January 2020 after final due diligence is completed.

The latest debt raising looks set to strengthen the company’s balance sheet while increasing its average debt maturity at a weighted-average fixed coupon of 3.07%.

How has the Sonic Healthcare share price reacted?

The Sonic Healthcare share price has climbed 1.31% higher to $28.58 per share at the time of writing, as investors have been buoyed by the news.

Also helping the company’s shares has been a solid start to the day by the S&P/ASX 200 Index (INDEXASX: XJO), which has climbed 0.14% to 6,55.80 points.

However, the Sonic Healthcare share price has also been a consistent performer over 2019, gaining 31.1% since the start of the year.

When you throw in a 2.94% per annum dividend as well, Sonic is certainly one of the better-looking ASX Healthcare stocks on the market at the moment.

Should you buy Sonic Healthcare shares?

With a market cap of $13.6 billion, Sonic is well and truly among the ASX large-cap stocks.

The company’s shares do trade on a price-to-earnings (P/E) multiple of 23.4x, meaning it could be a little cheap at the moment.

For some context, fellow healthcare stocks such as CSL Limited (ASX: CSL) and Ramsay Health Care Limited (ASX: RHC) are trading at 38.05x and 25.09x, respectively.

With that in mind, I think Sonic’s position as one of Australia’s largest diagnostic companies and a significant radiology player leaves it well-placed for future growth.

For those Fools seeking some downside portfolio protection from the healthcare sector as well as a strong dividend in the meantime, Sonic could be a good buy.

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Kenneth Hall has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. owns shares of CSL Ltd. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Ramsay Health Care Limited and Sonic Healthcare Limited. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.