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Why Moderna Stock Crashed Today

By Joe Tenebruso – Nov 4, 2021 at 7:08PM

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The vaccine maker cut its full-year sales forecast.

What happened 

Shares of Moderna (MRNA 0.46%) plunged 18% on Thursday after the biotech's third-quarter financial results fell short of investors' expectations. 

So what

Moderna's revenue rocketed more than 30-fold to $5 billion, fueled by sales of its COVID-19 vaccine. The drugmaker's net income, in turn, soared to $3.3 billion, or $7.70 per share, compared to a net loss of $233 million, or $0.59 per share, in the prior-year quarter.

However, Wall Street was expecting even more. Consensus estimates had called for revenue and earnings per share of $6.2 billion and $9.05, respectively. 

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

Moderna's stock price fell sharply on Thursday. Image source: Getty Images.

Moreover, Moderna slashed its fiscal 2021 full-year product sales forecast to between $15 billion and $18 billion, down from a previous projection of $20 billion. The company said it was shifting some vaccine deliveries to 2022 and prioritizing shipments to low-income countries, as it deals with supply chain challenges.

Now what

Moderna's results suggest that Pfizer (PFE -0.39%) has emerged as the clear leader in the COVID-19 vaccine market. The pharmaceutical giant boosted its full-year vaccine sales outlook to a staggering $36 billion earlier this week. 

Still, Moderna remains in a strong financial position. Management expects the company to generate as much as $22 billion in sales in 2022. And with more than $15 billion in cash reserves, Moderna has the capital it needs to fund its expansive research and development program.

"I am more energized than ever by the impact our mRNA platform will have on human health," CEO Stéphane Bancel said in a press release.

Joe Tenebruso has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Moderna Inc. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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