Novavax (NVAX -4.10%), one of the more up-and-down coronavirus stocks, headed south at the end of the week. On Friday, the company's shares fell by more than 6%, a shift that came after several reminders of pending legal actions against it.
There was no significant news about Novavax's high-profile NVX-CoV2373 coronavirus vaccine, at least on the developmental or regulatory front. Rather, between Thursday night and Friday morning a pair of law firms issued reminders that their class action lawsuits against the company were moving forward. Both reiterated their Jan. 11 submission deadlines for those applying to be part of the respective classes.
One of those suits, filed by San Francisco-based firm Hagens Berman, alleges that the "Defendants misrepresented Novavax's progress toward successfully developing its COVID-19 vaccine." Hagens Berman claims that the company overstated both its ability to produce the jab and the vaccine's regulatory and commercial potential, and failed to admit that it would likely miss certain regulatory timelines.
While none of the several class action lawsuits against Novavax is new or surprising, these reminders serve to illustrate that the biotech company's approach to both regulatory approval and commercialization have been clunky, to put it charitably. For example, Novavax has yet to apply for authorization or approval from the Food and Drug Administration, despite filing successfully for similar nods in other jurisdictions.
While Novavax justifiably has numerous bulls in the investment community -- NVX-CoV2373 has done extremely well in clinical testing, after all -- the company's execution leaves something to be desired. Those more bearish on the stock likely feel it won't be able to unlock the vaccine's considerable potential, and such investors ruled the pack on Friday.