How to buy AstraZeneca shares (AZN)

AstraZeneca is a British-Swedish multinational pharmaceutical company. This guide explains the company's history, its investment outlook, and the best places to find AstraZeneca shares.
Updated: Sep 13, 2022
Tip: our preferred broker is, eToro: visit & create account

On this page, you can find all the information you need to know about AstraZeneca. This includes a look at the different ways to invest, how it’s performed in recent years, and the sort of things that might affect its share price.

The best AstraZeneca trading platforms

If you’re ready to invest straight away, follow one of the links below to reach an industry-leading broker. We have reviewed a large number of brokers, and these are our top picks. For more on AstraZeneca, scroll down.

Min. Deposit
$ 10
User Score
Up to $240 bonus!
Deposit with ACA, Wire, Pay with my bank
Invest for dividends and get payout on stocks on Ex-Dividend day
Start Trading
Payment Methods:
Bank Transfer, Wire Transfer
Full Regulations:
Investoo Ltd is compensated if you access certain of the products or services offered by eToro USA LLC and/or eToro USA Securities Inc., as applicable. This compensation incentivizes Investoo Ltd to describe those products and services in favorable terms. Any testimonials contained in this communication may not be representative of the experience of other eToro customers and such testimonials are not guarantees of future performance or success.
Min. Deposit
$ 100
User Score
Trade out-of-hours on over 70+ US stocks
Get exposure to a wide range of popular UK, US and international stocks
Enjoy flexible access to more than 17,000 global markets, with reliable execution
Start Trading
Payment Methods:
Bank Transfer, Credit Card, Debit Card, PayPal
Full Regulations:
ASIC, FCA, FINMA, is a licensed bank (IG Bank in Switzerland)
Spread bets and CFDs are complex instruments and come with a high risk of losing money rapidly due to leverage. 68% of retail investor accounts lose money when trading spread bets and CFDs with this provider. You should consider whether you understand how spread bets and CFDs work, and whether you can afford to take the high risk of losing your money.
Min. Deposit
$ 0
User Score
$0 commission and $0 Options contract fees
Upgraded research with advanced charts
Smart Menus for faster trades
Start Trading
Payment Methods:
Full Regulations:

How to buy AstraZeneca stock, a step-by-step guide

Getting started on the stock market is a simple task, even for an inexperienced investor. We have broken the process down into the easy-to-follow steps you need to take to make an investment.

  1. Choose a broker. First of all, you need to use an online stock brokerage platform. There are many different options to choose from, each with their own unique benefits and drawbacks. The comparison table above can help you select the right broker for you, and you can head to our comprehensive broker reviews if you’re still unsure.
  2. Create an account. Once you’ve selected your broker, simply go to their website and create an account. The steps required for this will vary from platform to platform, but generally you can expect to have to provide your name, email address, phone number, and some form of photo identification.
  3. Deposit funds. Log into your broker account and select the option to deposit funds. Depending on your broker you’ll have a variety of payment options available; most brokers accept bank transfers and debit card payments, but not all accept e-wallets such as PayPal. Select your preferred payment method and deposit the amount of money you wish to invest in AstraZeneca shares.
  4. Place an order for AZN stock. Now navigate to the broker’s buying stocks page (a link to this can be found in the menu on the website). Here you’ll be able to search for AstraZeneca’s ticker symbol (AZN) and see the current price at which the stock is trading. If you’re happy with the price, enter the amount of shares you wish to buy and place your order.
  5. Execute your order. Once you have placed your order, your broker will automatically execute it for you and your AstraZeneca shares will be listed in your account. Congratulations, you’ve just bought shares in AstraZeneca!

What is AstraZeneca? And should I invest?

AstraZeneca is a major multi-national pharmaceutical and biotechnology company that is headquartered in Cambridge, UK. Founded in 1999, the company has a primary listing on the London Stock Exchange and is part of the FTSE 100 Index. The company has secondary listings on several other stocks exchanges, including the NASDAQ.

It is currently one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world, offering a portfolio of treatments for infection, oncology, neuroscience, respiratory diseases, cardiovascular diseases and much more. By revenue, its top products are Tagrisso® and Imfinzi®  (both lung cancer drugs), and Symbicort® (an Asthma treatment).

Both a pharmaceutical stock and value stock, the blue-chip company is targeting new innovations to drive up revenue. Most notably, during the COVID-19 pandemic, its vaccine created in collaboration with the University of Oxford rose to prominence, with up to 400 million doses being pledged to Europe.

How has the company performed in recent years?

Over the last 10 years, AstraZeneca’s revenue has been largely consistent, and in 2020, it recorded a figure of $26.6 million. In terms of operating profit, its 2020 figure of $5.16 million is a five-year high; however, it is significantly down compared to the previous decade’s profits, such as $12.8 million in 2011.

In terms of the company’s share price, it has increased consistently over the last decade. However, since the release of its COVID-19 vaccine, and concerns surrounding its efficacy and a potential link to blood clots, investor sentiment dwindled and the share price retreated.

To stabilise its share price and reestablish growth, the large-cap company needs to successfully mitigate the impact on its reputation. Furthermore, having acquired Alexion Pharmaceuticals at the end of 2020, which focusses on treatments for rare disorders, the company will hope new innovations can increase investor interest.

Is it a good time to buy AstraZeneca shares now?

If you intend to buy shares to benefit from long-term share price growth, AstraZeneca could increase in value if its pioneers new treatments and quashes any concerns about its COVID-19 vaccine. However, since AstraZeneca is already a huge company, you are unlikely to see the kind of growth you might get from investing in a small-cap stock with more headroom for growth.

In the short-term, trading AZN shares could also prove to be profitable, as potential volatility caused by the vaccine situation could create volatility. However, the real value of AstraZeneca shares comes in the form of dividends, as is usually the case for major companies creating healthy profits. The company’s dividend policy usually involves two payments per year, with a current rate of £1.374 or $1.90 per share.

If you are considering investing, make sure you stay up to date with the latest developments concerning AstraZeneca. Be it a new experimental treatment that boosts the company’s share price, or a controversy surrounding a certain medication, hear it first on Invezz:

Buying, selling and trading AstraZeneca shares for beginners

What to do before buying shares

You should always take the time to research a stock fully before investing your money, especially if you haven’t bought shares before. The more knowledge you have, the better your chances of making a wise investment. 

With that in mind, here’s a checklist to run through before investing in AstraZeneca shares.

  1. Research the company. You should always examine the fundamentals of a company before buying its stock. What is AstraZeneca? How did the company get its start? How did it grow? Is AstraZeneca’s revenue and profit growth picking up? Is the company innovating? The more you know about AstraZeneca, the better positioned you’ll be to make smart investment decisions.
  2. Make sure you understand the basics of stock investing. Before you start investing in the stock market, make sure you have an understanding of how it works. This will ensure that you have more clearly defined goals and have thought through how you will achieve them.
  3. Decide between share dealing and CFD trading. Choose the type of investment strategy you want to pursue, and make sure you have carried out the necessary fundamental or technical analysis for share dealing and CFD trading respectively.
  4. Set the size of your budget. The golden rule of investing is never to risk more than you can afford to lose. Not every investment you make will result in a profit, so it is important to set a budget that not only allows good potential for capital growth, but also protects against overly damaging losses.
  5. Find the right broker. Individual brokers each have their own pros and cons. Some will have low fees but have a user interface you struggle to understand, whereas others may be a bit more expensive but come with a range of features that you want to take advantage of. Use our broker reviews to find the right platform for you.
  6. Examine broader market conditions. No stock exists in a vacuum, and it’s always important to analyse the general trends of the stock market as a whole before investing. If a bear market is setting in and stock prices are falling, it’s best to wait it out and invest your money later when the stock is cheaper. While if the market is looking bullish, you’ll want to make your investment quickly to get the maximum benefit from rising stock prices. Follow the news to stay on top of the financial markets.

What is the difference between buying, selling, and trading shares?

If you’re new to stock investing, then it’s important to understand the basics of how to buy, sell, and trade AstraZeneca shares. Here’s a quick run-through of what’s involved in each.

Buying AstraZeneca

This process involves finding a broker or trading app and placing an order for AstraZeneca stock, as outlined in the steps further up this page. Ideally, you want to time your investment when the stock’s price is low so that you can profit by selling the shares after they increase in value.

Selling AstraZeneca

When you sell any AstraZeneca shares you have bought, you’ll want to do so at a higher price than the one at which you bought to earn a profit. 

When you sell is up to you. You might decide to hold for a long period of time, hoping to benefit from the company growing steadily throughout. Or, if you see that AstraZeneca’s stock is already up a lot compared to the price you bought it and you’ve noticed that the stock market is starting to fall, it might make sense to sell and take your profits to invest elsewhere. Equally, if the stock has fallen since you bought it and looks set to fall further, it might be a good idea to cut your losses by selling your shares.

Trading AstraZeneca

Trading is the same process as buying and selling shares, it’s just done over shorter periods of time with the aim to make small profits on a regular basis. This means that you can make money faster and spend your profits in your day-to-day life – however, on the other side it means you can lose money faster as well. For inexperienced investors, we generally recommend making investments for at least 6 months to a year instead of making trades in quick succession.

You can trade AstraZeneca shares through buying and selling shares, or by trading with CFDs. These allow investors to speculate on stock prices and trade with leverage in pursuit of bigger gains. CFDs trading is explained further in the next section, but it is worth noting that beginners should avoid trading with leverage. It comes with large risks and is best left to experienced investors.

Share dealing vs CFD trading

When it comes to investing in any stock, the two options you have are share dealing and trading. Which one of these methods to opt for largely depends on your investment timeline, with investors thinking long term tending to go for share dealing, and those looking for short term gains pursuing a more aggressive trading strategy.

Here’s a quick summary of the two approaches, and the pros and cons of each.

Share dealing 

Share dealing refers to the practice of buying and holding shares in a particular company over the long term. When investing like this, you’re seeking to profit either from dividend payments or an increase in the stock’s price over time.

When investing your money this way, it is important to do a thorough fundamental analysis of the company in which you are investing. You want to put your money in a stock you believe will trend upwards over time, even if there is some market volatility along the way, rather than get distracted by shorter-term peaks and troughs.


  • Can build wealth over time to achieve financial goals
  • Don’t need to be very reactive to short-term market movements
  • Some stocks will give you an income through regular dividend payments


  • Takes a long time to realise any profits
  • Your capital is tied up in stocks and cannot be used for other investments

CFD Trading 

If your aim is to generate profits in the short term, then you might be better off trading shares than holding them in your portfolio. Stock trades like this are executed using CFDs (contracts for difference), which allow investors to trade against the value of a stock without having to take ownership of it. When CFD trading, investors are looking to buy and sell stocks fast to profit from short-term fluctuations in value.

One aspect of CFD trading that many investors find attractive is that they allow you to trade with leverage. This means you can place large trades while only putting up a fraction of the value yourself – for instance, if a platform offered leverage of 1:10, you could put £10 into AZN shares and be able to trade £100 worth. This can maximise profits if the market moves in your favour, but be careful as it can also lead to heavy losses.

When trading using CFDs, it is key to be skilled at technical analysis and reading stock price charts. As you’re trading stocks quickly and frequently, the fundamental strength of the company in which you’re investing isn’t as important as being able to predict how its stock price will rise and fall minute-by-minute.


  • Can generate fast profits if you read the market right 
  • Some platforms allow you to trade with leverage
  • Prevents your capital being tied up so you can take advantage of investment opportunities


  • Trading with leverage is risky and can lead to big losses
  • Doesn’t necessarily generate growth over the long term

Consider which approach suits you best and craft an investment strategy that works for you. If you need more information, use our trading course and read our guide to CFD trading to get you up to speed. 

If neither of these options appeal to you, then you can find a variety of other ways to invest on this page. Otherwise, simply select one of the brokers in the table above to get started. 

How to choose a broker

With the wide variety of online brokers available these days, it can be hard to figure out which is the best service to go with. Our comparison table and in-depth reviews can help you cut through the noise, but by and large these are the aspects you should be considering when selecting a broker:

  • Range of stocks available. The most important thing is that you can actually use the broker to buy the shares you’re looking for. Some brokers offer more stocks than others, and many will allow you to trade other assets, such as cryptocurrency and commodities.
  • Fees and commissions. You want to keep as large a chunk of your profits as you can, so it’s important to make sure your broker doesn’t charge high fees that can eat into your profits.
  • Regulation. You should only use regulated brokers to place trades and buy shares in AstraZeneca. Unregulated brokers can be risky and offer little to no protection if the business were to fail while you had funds in your account.
  • Payment methods available. You might want to fund your broker account using a specific payment method, such as PayPal. Not all brokers accept every payment method, but using our comparisons you can search only the brokers that support the option you’re looking for.
  • Reputation. One of the strongest indicators of a broker’s reliability is the reputation it has with the customers who have used it. Brokers are online businesses, and as such many user experiences can be found online. You can check these out in addition to our reviews to make sure you choose the right platform.
  • Customer service. As you’re going to be investing your money using the platform, you want to check that the broker offers good customer service in case you have a query or something goes wrong.

Latest AstraZeneca news

AstraZeneca plc (LON: AZN) on Friday said vaccine contracts helped its Q1 financial results. Moving forward, however, it expects COVID-related sales to sink by 21% to 25%. The stock is nearly flat today. Notable figures in AstraZeneca Q1 results The British-Swedish multinational reported $11.39 billion in…
AstraZeneca plc (LON: AZN) closed up roughly 4.0% on Monday after the pharmaceutical behemoth said its cancer drug, Enhertu, showed promising results against a type of breast cancer with poor treatment options. Enhertu is effective against HER2-low metastatic breast cancer According to the British multinational, its late-stage clinical trial…
Shares of AstraZeneca plc (NASDAQ: AZN) are up 3.5% this morning on a significant YoY increase in Q4 revenue. Charges related to the Alexion acquisition, however, pushed it into a quarterly loss. AstraZeneca’s Q4 results AstraZeneca reported $347 million in net loss versus the year-ago figure of $1.01 billion…
Shares of AstraZeneca plc (LON: AZN) are down about 5.0% on Friday after the pharmaceutical giant said the cost of developing its COVID-19 vaccine swung it to a net loss in the fiscal third quarter. Q3 financial results AstraZeneca reported $1.65 billion in net loss – a massive downturn…
AstraZeneca plc (LON:AZN) released its ‘Storm Chaser’ study results on Tuesday that at first glance appear disappointing but beyond the headline takeaway, there were some positives. The trial assessed both the efficacy and safety of the LAAB (long-acting antibody) combination, AZD7442, designed to battle the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

Stock trading courses

Stocks Courses
If our Stock Markets 101 course was your introduction to stock market investing, think of the Stock Investing course as the next step, your intermediate-level guide to investing. Just remember, this is not a get-rich-quick scheme and takes time, patience, and emotional stability.
Stocks Courses
Luckily, it’s far easier to begin trading than it was in the 90s when Wall Street and big money were the only options. Get started with our introduction to stock trading. You’ll come away feeling more confident about the task ahead, while acquiring a base knowledge of all the most…

Sources & references
Risk disclaimer

Invezz is a place where people can find reliable, unbiased information about finance, trading, and investing – but we do not offer financial advice and users should always carry out their own research. The assets covered on this website, including stocks, cryptocurrencies, and commodities can be highly volatile and new investors often lose money. Success in the financial markets is not guaranteed, and users should never invest more than they can afford to lose. You should consider your own personal circumstances and take the time to explore all your options before making any investment. Read our risk disclaimer >

Charlie Hancox
Financial Writer
Alongside his passion for trading, Charlie has represented Great Britain and won national championships as a water polo player, and as a budding film director, has… read more.