What happened

Shares of Pfizer (PFE 0.91%) rose on Wednesday, following positive analyst commentary.

As of 3:30 p.m. ET, the drugmaker's stock price was up more than 5%. 

So what 

On Monday, UBS analyst Colin Bristow placed a buy rating on Pfizer's stock and boosted his share price forecast from $52 to $60. Bristow estimates that the pharmaceutical titan will earn at least $14 billion in sales from its new oral antiviral treatment, Paxlovid. The pill has been shown to reduce the risk of hospitalization or death in high-risk patients with COVID-19 by nearly 90% in clinical trials. 

All told, Bristow sees Pfizer earning as much as $50 billion in sales from COVID-19 vaccines and treatments in 2022.

A miniature gold bull is on a keyboard button labeled buy.

Analysts have grown more bullish on Pfizer's shares in recent days. Image source: Getty Images.

On Tuesday, investors applauded Pfizer's acquisition of Arena Pharmaceuticals (ARNA). Mizuho analyst Vamil Divan lifted his price target on Pfizer's stock from $44 to $56 after news of the deal broke. Divan views the purchase of Arena as an intelligent way for Pfizer to diversify its product portfolio and strengthen its long-term growth prospects.  

Now what

Helping the world battle COVID-19 has been a boon for Pfizer. The healthcare giant's revenue soared 130% year over year to $24.1 billion in the third quarter, driven by sales of its Comirnaty COVID-19 vaccine. Its adjusted income, in turn, surged 133% to $7.7 billion, or $1.34 per share.

Yet despite its enormous drug development success and tremendous profit generation, Pfizer's stock currently trades for only about 11 times analysts' earnings projections for next year. That's arguably a bargain for a best-in-class drug developer. Pfizer's shares, in turn, could continue to climb higher in the weeks and months ahead.