Moderna Inc. is having its best two-day rally in a year after the company said a new vaccine to fight the omicron strain of the coronavirus could be ready by early 2022 if needed.
The stock rose 14% to its highest level in two months, after jumping 21% on Friday’s global sale of risky assets, to regain its leading position on the SandP 500 since the start of the year.
The company mobilized hundreds of workers over Thanksgiving last Thursday to start work on omicron, Chief Medical Officer Paul Burton said over the weekend.
Moderna’s mRNA technology is ideal for tailoring vaccines for new variants, according to Piper Sandler analyst Edward A. Tenthoff, who is classified as overweight in stocks.
“Moderna is better able to develop new Covid19 vaccines and now has the capacity to produce several hundred million vaccine doses every month,” Tenthoff wrote in a message to customers. SARS-CoV-2 is not going to go away and will provide years of future revenue.
Jefferies analyst Michael Yee was also optimistic about Moderna investors, saying the latest spread should encourage people sooner rather than later to get the boost as biotechnology focuses on a new version for 2022but though within 60-90 days.
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BioNTech SE jumped as much as 7.6% after saying it is working to adapt its Covid-19 vaccine to address the omicron variant and expects to have a new version ready within 100 days if necessary. The biotech and its Covid vaccine partner Pfizer Inc. put plans into place months ago. Pfizer shares rally 3.2% to a fresh record.
Other companies developing vaccines and therapies to combat Covid, including Novavax Inc. and Adagio Therapeutics Inc., also rose. Novavax climbed as much as 5.1% as analysts from B Riley touted the need for booster shots, while Adagio’s share price more than doubled in its biggest rally ever on plans to submit its antibody for emergency use in mid-2022.