Shares of Moderna Inc (NASDAQ: MRNA) are up 25% this morning after the World Health Organisation called a special meeting to assess if the new heavily mutated Coronavirus variant could be more contagious or resistant than the delta variant.
The stock is still down about 30% from its year-to-date high
Moderna rose to prominence last year amidst the global pandemic after clinical studies showed its mRNA vaccine to be highly effective against COVID-19. The Massachusetts’ based company is yet to add any other commercial product to its portfolio.
The news comes shortly after Moderna secured approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a booster dose of its Coronavirus vaccine for all eligible adults. The price action on Friday pushed the stock further away from $250 – a price target that Deutsche Bank announced for MRNA late last month.
Despite a significant move up this morning, however, the stock is still down about 30% from its year-to-date high of about $485.
What does the new variant mean for travel and tourism?
WHO experts on Friday proposed governments take a risk-based approach and not impose travel restrictions until research-backed data establishes B.1.1.529 as a variant of “concern”. Briefing the United Nations in Geneva, spokesperson Christian Lindmeier said:
At this point, implementing travel measures is being cautioned against. The WHO recommends countries continue to apply a risk-based and scientific approach when implementing travel measures.
According to him, it could take weeks to know for sure if the new variant is more contagious or resistant against the existing vaccines than delta. In the meantime, the international public health agency suggests people maintain hand hygiene, wear face masks, and avoid large gatherings whenever possible.
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