Is the Cochlear share price the one that got away?

The Cochlear Limited (ASX: COH) share price is once again surging higher, this time hitting a new record high of $227.39 per share in yesterday’s trade.

Cochlear shares are now up an astonishing 2,483.98% since early 1999 and 30.01% in 2019 alone.

So, is there still time to buy Cochlear for a bargain or should you look for the next hot ASX healthcare stock?

Why the Cochlear share price is up 30% in 2019

The implantable hearing device company has gone from strength to strength in 2019, continuing its already strong momentum. The company’s strong products and incumbent status in the hearing solutions sector could provide firm tailwinds for further earnings growth.

The Cochlear share price climbed higher on Monday after being granted approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The approval was in relation to its Osia 2 System, which is the world’s first active osseointegrated steady-state implant.

Cochlear intends to commence commercial rollout of the Osia 2 System in the United States in 2H 2020. The product launch could represent a significant earnings boost in what is a potentially lucrative market.

The Cochlear share price also received another FDA approval in June for its Nucleas Profile Plus Series cochlear implant. Given the upwards trend in Cochlear’s earnings in recent years, these expansion plans could see that trend continue into FY 2020 and beyond.

Should you buy into Cochlear?

While I think Cochlear’s earnings profile and market position will remain strong, there could be better value ASX healthcare shares on the market right now.

Cochlear trades on a 47.4x earnings multiple, which is slightly more expensive than the 44x multiple of CSL Limited (ASX: CSL).

Ramsay Health Care Limited (ASX: RHC) trades at 28x earnings and has a higher dividend yield (2.06%) than both CSL and Cochlear.

While Cochlear looks likely to succeed into at least 2020, there could be better bargain buys on the market right now.

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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 Cochlear Ltd. and CSL Ltd. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended Cochlear Ltd. and Ramsay Health Care 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.

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