Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Why Moderna Is Shooting Higher Today

By Eric Volkman - Jan 21, 2021 at 2:32PM

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

Developments on both sides of the Pacific Ocean seem to be driving the stock northward.

What happened

Coronavirus stock Moderna (MRNA -3.52%) was up by nearly 8% in mid-afternoon trading on Thursday. Two pieces of news about the company's coronavirus vaccine seem to be supporting this rise.

So what

The first is Moderna's announcement that dosing of participants has begun in a phase 1/2 clinical trial for mRNA-1273 in Japan. This study, which is being led by Japanese pharmaceutical company Takeda (TAK -1.01%), seeks to enroll 200 people aged 20 and older.

Gloved hands holding a vial of medicine.

Image source: Getty Images.

If the vaccine proves as efficacious as it has in trials elsewhere in the world it is sure to be authorized for use in the country, which is home to over 127 million people. Takeda has agreed to distribute 50 million doses if and when authorization occurs.

The second bit of news comes from the United States. On Wednesday, California's Department of Public Health announced it was safe to use vaccines from a lot that had come under scrutiny after several people reportedly developed allergic reactions to their initial doses from the batch. Following that incident, the state paused inoculations from the lot.

Now what

Given mRNA-1273's performance in previous trials, it's almost a foregone conclusion that it will be successful in the Japanese study. And, since it's a two-dose vaccine, Japan will need far more than the initial 50 million doses that comprise the current Moderna/Takeda agreement. The restart of dosing from the affected lot in California also presages continued high demand for the vaccine.

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Stocks Mentioned

Moderna, Inc. Stock Quote
Moderna, Inc.
$137.27 (-3.52%) $-5.01
Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited Stock Quote
Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited
$14.16 (-1.01%) $0.14

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning service.

Stock Advisor Returns
S&P 500 Returns

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 05/18/2022.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with The Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from The Motley Fool's premium services.