Shares of two of the top mRNA vaccine manufacturers have dropped significantly this year as COVID-19 vaccinations have declined.
Pfizer’s stock is down about 40% this year, while Moderna’s stock is down 55%, following the release of revenue guidance from both companies. Novavax, which manufactures a COVID-19 vaccine that does not use mRNA technology, has seen its stock drop by 63% year to date.
Throughout the pandemic and after both companies introduced widely used mRNA vaccines, Moderna and Pfizer’s shares have steadily increased. Moderna was worth nearly $450 per share in mid-September 2021, but as of Friday, it was down to around $80. Pfizer’s share price peaked at around $59 per share in mid-December 2021, but it has since fallen to around $30 as of Friday.
Pfizer recently reduced its sales forecast by $9 billion due to declining demand for its COVID-19 vaccine and anti-viral drug Paxlovid. Moderna, on the other hand, reiterated its previous guidance and stated that it would provide an update on whether to reduce its sales forecast for its vaccine in November.
Moderna cautioned that “it’s too early to accurately project where vaccination rates will land” in the coming year. However, the company’s stock has dropped significantly this week, and it is now at its lowest level since November 2020, according to Bloomberg.
“The decline in demand for the vaccine and Paxlovid demonstrates that we are truly in the post-COVID era,” Max Nisen, an analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence, told Bloomberg. “People are going to have to figure out what that looks like well beyond Pfizer.”
With Pfizer lowering its forecast, other companies that profited from COVID-19 products are likely to revise their own projections, according to the report.
Meanwhile, Lucira Health, the maker of COVID-19 tests, declared bankruptcy earlier this year, and Ellume, another test-maker, has declared bankruptcy. According to the report, pharmaceutical company Abbott Laboratories also faced a drop in COVID-19 testing revenue in 2023, which resulted in job cuts.
“COVID-19 vaccine revenue concerns should be at an all-time high right now,” Oppenheimer analyst Hartaj Singh told Yahoo Finance. “A strong third-quarter performance should alleviate some of these concerns.” And good guidance on potential revenues for 2024 early next year could re-energize the stock.”
Moderna stated in a recent regulatory filing that it expects its vaccine sales to be between $6 billion and $8 billion in 2023, a reiteration of what it stated in its second quarter earnings report.
“As noted previously, if the U.S. market for COVID-19 vaccines is approximately 50 million administered doses, Moderna still expects to be in the bottom half of the disclosed range; if the U.S. market is approximately 100 million administered doses, Moderna still expects to be in the top half of the disclosed range,” according to a statement from the company.
Pfizer said in a report last week that it expects vaccine sales to be about $2 billion lower than previously expected due to lower-than-expected rates of vaccination.
It came just weeks after US federal regulators approved and recommended Moderna’s and Pfizer’s latest bivalent COVID-19 boosters, as well as Novavax’s vaccine, in September. However, recent data show that the rollout appears to be relatively slow, with approximately 10 million people, or approximately 3% of Americans, receiving the booster. This figure is up from 7 million the previous week.
Officials from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) told The Epoch Times this week that they plan to continue distributing vaccine doses and that the government isn’t concerned about potential waste.
“The administration remains committed to pulling every lever at its disposal during the fall respiratory vaccination campaign, encouraging the American public to stay up to date on their vaccines to keep themselves and their loved ones safe,” a spokeswoman for the Department of Health and Human Services told The “As a result of these efforts, around 10 million Americans have been vaccinated since the updated vaccines were authorized, and recommended last month.”
Hospitalizations for COVID-19 have also decreased in recent weeks after increasing over the summer, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Deaths, ER visits, and case numbers have all decreased.
The CDC issued a report on Oct. 6 stating that COVID-19 remains a “public health threat” for older Americans and urging people to get the recently approved updated booster. According to the report, older adults continue to account for the majority of hospitalizations in the United States.
In a separate report, the CDC stated that it expects a “moderate COVID-19 wave” this winter, but that the virus “could peak earlier than last season due to limited summer activity compared to previous years.”