Following Pfizer and BioNTech’s announcement that their vaccine candidate was found to be 90 percent effective against COVID-19 in phase 3 trials, optimism quickly spread among investors, sending shares soaring across the globe. Unsurprisingly the bump was particularly noticeable for companies severely affected by the pandemic and the measures taken to contain it.
As the following chart shows, shares of airlines, hotels and other travel companies soared on the vaccine news, with Marriot International, American Airlines and Expedia mere examples of a broader upward trend for the travel and hospitality industry.
Interestingly, the news of vaccine progress also sent some shares tumbling, as few companies were considered “pandemic winners”, with Zoom Video Communications, Peloton and Netflix perhaps the most widely known examples. Zoom, the video conferencing tool that rose to fame amid the first lockdown, saw its share price drop by more than 17 percent on Monday, shaving roughly $25 billion off the company’s market cap.
While yesterday’s announcement was certainly cause for optimism, it needs to be noted that the vaccine has yet to complete phase 3 trials, be approved, produced and distributed. Pfizer and BioNTech project that they could produce up to 50 million vaccine doses by 2020 and up to 1.3 billion doses in 2021.