Are These Covid Treatment Makers Getting A Price Booster Shot?
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News catalysts are often behind big stock price moves, and that’s certainly been true for companies like Moderna (NASDAQ: MRNA), Regeneron Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: REGN) and Novavax (NASDAQ: NVAX), which make coronavirus vaccines and treatments.
These days, the news items about those stocks are coming at us fast and furious every day. For example, there’s the pause in the Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) vaccine; Pfizer (NYSE: PFE) and Moderna testing vaccines on children; and continued restrictions on the AstraZeneca (NASDAQ: AZN) vaccine.
Another unusual element, among the countless pandemic-driven anomalies: Do you remember ever knowing (or caring) about the manufacturer of any other vaccine you or your family members received? Nobody does.
Moderna said last week that it would slash vaccine supplies to the U.K. and Canada, due to production issues. Shares fell 8.31% this week, but it’s still forming a constructive area of price consolidation.
Also last week, Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel said the company hopes its Covid booster shots will be available in the U.S. this fall. In addition, Bancel said Moderna would like to develop a vaccine that provides protection against the flu as well as Covid-19.
Moderna’s chart looks different from the typical stock chart over the past year. Rather than decline in February 2020, along with the rest of the world’s equities, Moderna bolted 26.43% that month as the company sent early samples of its Covid vaccine to the National Institutes of Health.
The stock returned 245.59% over the past year. It’s still a young company, and as is common with biotechs, went several years without turning a profit. As you might guess, that’s expected to change soon, with analysts pegging net income at $22.91 per share this year.
Shares are trading above key moving averages, as the stock is now etching a cup-shaped base, after a double-bottom pattern broke down. It’s currently in that “falling knife” area where it’s risky to make a purchase, but the stock has plenty of upside ahead for those with a little patience.
One price driver could be the next quarterly report, on May 6. Analysts expect earnings per share of $2.62 on revenue of $2.34 billion.
Regeneron said this month it would ask the FDA to expand use of its Covid-19 antibody therapy as a preventative measure. The drug cocktail, called REGEN-COV, is currently approved for adults and teenagers with mild to moderate Covid-19 symptoms.
The medication has been in a phase-three clinical trial, which reduced the risk of symptomatic illness by 81%. Regeneron also found that symptomatic individuals treated with the drug saw their symptoms resolved in one week, as opposed to three weeks with a placebo.
This company has been around awhile, and has a portfolio of other treatments that’s been driving profitability. Its other products include medications for cancer, inflammatory conditions and eye disease.
The stock has been declining since early August. Some analysts believe its Covid treatments won’t generate long-term demand, given the availability of vaccines. However, with the medical community increasingly saying Covid is here to stay, even if vaccines control the spread, it’s clear treatment will still be necessary, not just in the U.S. but globally.
In addition, other medications in its portfolio will also continue generating revenue.
The stock is still essentially in freefall, although the 10-day moving average is turning higher. Once investors begin scooping up shares at these bargain prices, we may see a bullish moving-average crossover as the 10-day line once again moves above the 50-day line.
This company, too, reports its first-quarter on May 6, with analysts eyeing revenue of $2.57 billion, with earnings coming in at $8.02 per share. Both would be year-over-year gains.
Novavax said last month it was hoping to have FDA approval in May for emergency use of its Covid-19 vaccine. The company is pinning that hope on U.S. acceptance of clinical trial data from the U.K. However, if regulators require data from clinical trials being conducted in the U.S. and Mexico, that may push approval back by a few months.
The company also has drugs for other respiratory ailments in the pipeline, as well as a vaccine for the Ebola virus.
Like Moderna, this company has not been profitable, but analysts see that changing this year, with the company reporting 2021 earnings per share of $21.32.
This stock also avoided the great 2020 market meltdown, as it announced its plans to develop a coronavirus vaccine in February of last year. Its share price more than doubled that month.
Over the past year, Novavax returned a stunning 1,060.90%. Shares are consolidating below a February 9 high of $331.68. This is another example of a stock whose 10-day average is currently below its 50-day line, and a crossover, which may occur relatively soon, could be a bullish sign for investors.
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals is a part of the Entrepreneur Index, which tracks some of the largest publicly traded companies founded and run by entrepreneurs.