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Why Moderna Stock Plunged Today

By Joe Tenebruso - Feb 1, 2021 at 6:11PM

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An analyst sounded a note of caution to investors.

What happened

Shares of Moderna (MRNA 4.97%) declined by 9% on Monday after Bank of America downgraded its stock. 

So what

Analyst Geoff Meacham cut his rating on Moderna from neutral to underperform and reiterated his price forecast of $150 per share. Meacham's estimate is roughly 13% below Moderna's closing price on Friday and 5% below its current price of $157.48.

A person is pointing to a digital stock chart that rises sharply and then falls.

Moderna's stock fell hard on Monday. Image source: Getty Images.

Meacham said investors are valuing Moderna's stock based on a "best-case" scenario of more than $85 billion in total coronavirus-related revenue, despite the potential for rising competition from rival COVID-19 vaccine makers like Johnson & Johnson and Novavax. Thus, he argues Moderna's share price is too high, as it does not properly reflect these risks.

Now what

Still, it should be noted that not all analysts are as bearish on Moderna's stock. Oppenheimer analyst Hartaj Singh actually boosted his stock price forecast from $178 to $206 and reiterated his outperform rating on Moderna on Monday. Singh said Moderna's ability to produce as many as 1 billion doses of its COVID-19 vaccine in 2021 gives it an edge over many of its competitors. 

Differing opinions among Wall Street analysts are common, particularly among coronavirus-related stocks. Moderna's stock price, in turn, is likely to remain volatile in the days and weeks ahead.

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