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Who will win Covid-19 vaccine race?
2020-10-13 • Updated
Goldman Sachs claimed that vaccine developments tend to have more impact on the overall sentiment than even election results or Q3 earnings. We have had already a chance to observe how recent negative news weighed on the market sentiment. Johnson & Johnson announced that it has temporarily stopped the Covid-19 vaccine trials because of the unexplained illness of one participant. As a result, the market sentiment deteriorated, and the safe-haven US dollar rose today. However, the nature of the illness hasn’t been yet defined: a special committee is trying to find it out.
Actually, it has been the second-largest setback in the vaccine race so far. AstraZeneca halted human trials for a similar reason: a patient had an adverse reaction. Trials have been resumed in the UK, Brazil, India, and South Africa, while it remains on hold in the US as the Food and Drug Administration has been still investigating that case.
Both AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson have created adenovirus-based vaccines. So, perhaps, biotech companies, which use other technologies will have a boost. For instance, Moderna is working on a vaccine, based on the technique of using messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA). It is said that this technique has more advantages than traditional drug development by medical and manufacturing reasons.
By the way, BioNTech uses the same mRNA technique. Pfizer and BioNTech are creating the vaccine in collaboration, and two companies have announced that their vaccine has been accepted for a rolling review by Health Canada. It looks like Pfizer and BioNTech have all chances to win this rally. Don’t you think?
Forecasts from Goldman Sachs
Goldman Sachs gives the 71% of probability that the vaccine will be available for widespread distribution by the first quarter of 2021. Notably, the bank upgraded its forecasts from 39%, which it gave in August. Elsewhere, Goldman wrote in a note to its clients that it expects strong growth in such sectors as healthcare, consumer staples, and information tech companies. At the same time, the energy and industrials sectors are predicted to slump.
Pfizer is edging higher. It approaches the intersection of the 200-week moving average and the strong resistance level of $37.25, which it has failed to break in previous years. That’ why we can expect some sell-off around this area. Once the breakout happens, it will encourage buyers, and the price may surge to the recent high of $39.00. On the flip side, there is a 7-months support line which constrains the price to fall beyond. The move below September’s dips of $36.00 will push the price lower to the next support of $34.00.
Just look at great BioNTech’s performance. In comparison with other biotech giants as Pfizer, it’s a young company, but it has managed to rise enormously so far. BioNTech made its US stock market initial public offering last October 15, and it increased its value so much that it has been included in Nasdaq. The move above March’s high of $95.00 will drive the price to the record high of $105.00. Support levels are $76.00 and 70.00.
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