Vaccine Stocks—Including Pfizer, Moderna, BioNTech And Novavax—Slide Amid Plummeting Demand

Published 8 months ago
By Forbes | Robert Hart
Florida Volunteers Take Part In COVID-19 Vaccine Trials
Getty Images

TOPLINE

Stocks of Pfizer and other Covid vaccine makers like BioNTech and Moderna fell in premarket trading Monday after the company slashed its revenue forecasts last week, a change in fortune for the sector as demand for the pandemic-related products that propelled them to record profits last year plummets.

KEY FACTS

Pfizer shares fell 3.11% during premarket trading on Monday.

Shares of Germany’s BioNTech, which jointly developed the Comirnaty coronavirus shot with Pfizer, were down 6.57% in Frankfurt, falling to a two-month low.

Advertisement

The German biotech’s U.S.-listed shares were also down 6.41% in premarket trading.

Shares of rival mRNA vaccine maker Moderna also fell 4.45% in premarket trading.

Shares of Novavax, which has faced setbacks in getting its updated protein-based shot approved, were also down 4.54% on Monday.

NEWS PEG

Pfizer slashed its annual revenue forecast by 13% on Friday due to sliding demand for its Covid-19 products. Sales of the firm’s mRNA shot, produced jointly with BioNTech, and its antiviral drug Paxlovid helped it secure record profits last year but the firm has long warned about sliding demand as the world, and particularly the U.S., exits the pandemic this year. The company cut its projections for Paxlovid by $7 billion and by around $2 billion for its Covid shots, which was greater than analysts expected. Pfizer said it was launching a $3.5 billion cost-cutting program covering jobs and expenses as it prepares for the hit to its revenues. Pfizer said it would take a write down of $5.5 billion in the third quarter due to shrinking demand for its Covid stock, most of which comes from inventory write-offs of Paxlovid worth $4.6 billion. The company also acknowledged a $900 million write off from Covid vaccine stock, a write-off BioNTech also flagged on Monday on account of its profit sharing agreement with Pfizer.

Advertisement

WHAT TO WATCH FOR

Moderna will report its quarterly earnings on November 2. While Moderna is leveraging its success during the pandemic to develop a wide array of medicines, treatments and vaccines for things including Lyme disease, the flu, HIV, RSV, Zika, norovirus and genetic conditions, its Covid-19 vaccines are its only commercial product and it is particularly vulnerable to sliding demand.

FURTHER READING

Pfizer Launches $3.5 Billion Cost-Cutting Program Amid Declining Covid Vaccine Sales (Forbes)