On Monday this week Moderna and BioNTech shares both fell to their lowest price in years as the companies behind the most widely-used mRNA COVID-19 vaccines grappled with investor unrest after plummeting revenues.
Less than 24 hours after shares in the pharmaceutical giants' crashed two new scare stories emerged: A new variant of Covid-19, and the headline grabbing 'Disease X'.
BioNTech’s earnings report revealing the German firm’s sales fell 95% year-over-year last quarter, knocking billions off the share price. Moderna’s crash came after it reported a 93% annual decline in quarterly revenues in its own earnings release last Thursday.
BioNTech, which developed a Covid vaccine with Pfizer, said Monday it expects to generate $5.5 billion in Covid vaccine sales this year, a 70% decline from 2022, while Moderna’s $6 billion to $8 billion in forecasted Covid jab sales is similarly about two-thirds below its $18 billion of revenue in the unit last year. In 2021 and 2022, Moderna and BioNTech rode Covid to tens of billions of dollars in profits. That gravy train is over.
The bumper pay-day of Covid-19 is well and truly over and stories of a new variant and annual jabs did little or nothing to stop the drugs companies hemorrhaging billions of dollars on the stock market.
Enter the new scare-story, Disease X, unspecified as yet, the 'theoretical ' scientists are already sure that new virus will be even more deadly than Covid-19.
The timing of its announcement is reported by some as suspicious, with sceptics suggesting that it is merely another piece of cynical manipulation of the public, in effect a marketing campaign for their vaccines.
The idea of a super-plague, complete with sinister sounding name, is being planted in the minds of the public. It's being coupled to stories of super-vaccines that could be in the arms of the public within 100 days of the plague's beginnings according to the press release.
Keen observers will be aware that, in 2018, four of the world's biggest drugs manufactures suffered huge financial losses before ramping up lobbying of the World Health Organisation to declare a pandemic, which later became Covid-19.