Is the CSL (ASX:CSL) share price a clear buy?

Can the CSL Limited (ASX:CSL) share price be rated as a clear buy right now? Some brokers have had their say on the healthcare giant.

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Can the CSL Limited (ASX: CSL) share price be called a clear buy right now? Some of the leading brokers in Australia have had their say.

What’s the latest views on the CSL share price?

Quite a few brokers are positive on the ASX healthcare share giant.

For example, the brokers from Macquarie Group Ltd (ASX: MQG) currently rate the CSL share price as a buy with a price target of $296. That’s only a single digit upside over the next 12 months, but Macquarie is positive on the growing activity at US plasma collection centres. This is an important part of the picture for CSL.

However, Macquarie has pointed out that there are potential competition issues down the road.

Citi is another broker that has a buy rating on CSL shares, with a price target of $310. The broker is also positive on the plasma collection recovery story.

However, not every broker is convinced that the CSL share price is an opportunity today. For example, Morgan Stanley is neutral on CSL with a price target of just $275 – which is where the share price is already trading.

Ord Minnett is also not convinced – its price target is $266.20, which is below where it’s trading now.

What has the CSL share price done recently?

It has been a strange year for CSL so far. It’s actually lower than where it was at the start of the calendar year. But in March the CSL share price went as low as $246, so it has recovered noticeably since then.

CSL recently gave investors a presentation about its current operations and growth plans. In FY21 it’s opening 25 new plasma collection centre, bringing its global network to more than 300. Not only are there 284 centres in the US, but there are also nine in Germany, three in Hungary and five in China. It has plans to open another 40 in FY22.

The healthcare giant has plans to mitigate some of the issues it has seen relating to its plasma collection business. CSL has made adjustments to its US donor compensation. It also has a call back program for first-time, lapsed and temporarily deferred donors. CSL is also doing a large campaign to raise awareness of the opportunity and need for plasma donations.

Looking at the vaccine-focused Seqirus business, CSL has delivered over 100 million doses in the northern hemisphere for its 2020 to 2021 influenza campaign. There’s also an ongoing shift to differentiated products.

In the longer-term, CSL said that planning is underway for the construction of a new cell-culture vaccine facility in Melbourne.

Is it a clear opportunity?

The CSL share price does not offer a lot of upside according to the brokers that rate it as a buy.

At the current CSL share price, it’s valued at around 40x FY21’s estimated earnings.

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Motley Fool contributor Tristan Harrison 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 owns shares of and has recommended Macquarie Group Limited. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.

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