The patent has expired – please do not resuscitate. That has been the pharmaceutical industry’s excuse for a decade of underperformance in the face of a wave of patent expiries. Trailing the market is quite an effort given the collapse in bank shares, although in fairness pharma has held its own in the past year and a half. Is that a “buy” signal for a global sector that makes lots of cash and has a fair number of defensive qualities? That depends on whether its problems are outweighed by a couple of notable industry positives.