U.S. stocks jumped on Monday after Moderna said preliminary trial data showed its COVID vaccine was more than 94% effective. Earlier, the Dow Jones Industrial Average added over 450 points, or 1.5%, and reached an intraday record. The S&P 500 rose 1.2% and the Nasdaq Composite climbed 0.7%.
The promising Moderna announcement makes the Massachusetts-based biotech firm the second drugmaker to say it has a potentially effective vaccine.
Similar trial results last week from Pfizer and BioNTech drove investors into underperforming names dependent on a vaccine reopening the economy. The companies said at the time that their candidate was more than 90% effective in preventing Covid-19 among participants.
A vaccine “turns what could have been a prolonged crisis into something closer to a natural disaster (large shock, swift recovery),” TS Lombard analysts Steven Blitz and Andrea Cicione wrote in a note. “Without an effective vaccine, current EPS consensus expectations (pointing to a return to trend by the end of next year) would be on the optimistic side. But with one, they may actually come to pass.”
Traders were also excited on Monday after Moderna said its vaccine remains stable at 36 to 46 degrees Fahrenheit, the temperature of a standard home or medical refrigerator, for up to 30 days. It can be stored for up to six months at negative 4 degrees Fahrenheit. By comparison, Pfizer’s vaccine requires a storage temperature of minus 94 degrees Fahrenheit.
MacDailyNews Take: Obviously, an effective COVID vaccine that can be stored in a standard fridge is great news for everyone who longs to get back to “normal” life as soon as possible.