The stock market took another big hit on Thursday as investors had their first chance to react to Russia mounting attacks on Ukraine. However, the Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC 1.35%) once again proved its resiliency even in the face of adversity, clawing back from losses of nearly 3% to post a drop of just 0.4% as of 1 p.m. ET today.
Indeed, a couple of well-known stocks managed to see sizable gains in early afternoon trading on Thursday. Below, we'll look more closely at why Moderna (MRNA 1.15%) and Universal Display (OLED 1.49%) were able to advance sharply even on a down day for the broader market.
Moderna gets healthier
Shares of Moderna were up almost 12% early Thursday afternoon. The mRNA specialist is best known currently for its COVID-19 vaccine, and the company produced impressive fourth-quarter financial results that showed just how important its pandemic-related success has been.
Moderna had revenue of $7.2 billion in the fourth quarter of 2021, soaring to more than 12 times its sales in the year-earlier quarter. Sales of its COVID vaccine, marketed as Spikevax, went from 13 million doses in the fourth quarter of 2020 to 297 million in the most recent quarter. The company produced net income of $4.9 billion, reversing a year-ago loss and resulting in earnings of $11.29 per share. That closed a year in which the company had $18.5 billion in revenue, $12.2 billion in net income, and earnings of $28.29 per share.
Moreover, Moderna sees good times lasting for quite a while. Advanced purchase agreements for 2022 will produce product sales of $19 billion, and it is working on additional orders in the coming year as well. Moreover, the commercial outlook for Spikevax in 2023 is promising, with firm orders from the U.K., Canada, Taiwan, and Kuwait.
With that money, Moderna expects to accelerate research and development as well as pursuing potential strategic combinations. Stock buybacks might also play a role, and with shares still down almost 70% from recent highs, shareholders seemed quite pleased at that prospect.
A clearer picture from Universal Display
Elsewhere, shares of Universal Display were up nearly 14%. The maker of organic LED displays and lighting announced fourth-quarter results that inspired shareholders to feel better about the company's prospects.
On their face, Universal Display's numbers looked mixed. Revenue of $146.2 million for the quarter was up just 3% from year-ago levels. A big increase in the cost of materials caused net income to fall 15% year over year, with earnings weighing in at $0.96 per share. Although materials sales soared, royalty and license fees fell sharply, offsetting much of the overall revenue gain.
Yet investors were pleased to see Universal Display expecting to sustain reasonable growth in 2022. Projections for full-year revenue of $625 million to $650 million would represent growth of between 13% and 17%. That would be a slowdown from 2021's 29% growth rate on the top line, but that's to be expected given the business disruptions felt around the world in 2020.
Viewers love OLED displays, and Universal Display has been a pioneer in the market. Even with cost pressures and other factors weighing on performance, the company has the potential to regain even more of its losses as 2022 goes on.