Pfizer’s COVID-19 Vaccine Emergency Approval Request Makes Investors Hopeful for the Economy

By Thomas Price Monday, October 19, 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to deeply affect the lives of nearly everyone on the planet, the race to create, approve, and distribute an effective vaccine has never been so urgent. With many different vaccine candidates in different phases of clinical and human trials, there has been considerable discussion about which of them will be the first to be approved for public use and which company is set for a massive boost in value due to the approval. As both Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca hit snags in their testing, Pfizer has slowly continued to make progress until recent developments have made them look extremely promising. The possibility of Pfizer applying for their vaccine’s emergency use approval from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) before the end of November may change the landscape of the pandemic moving forward and the company itself.

Pfizer Vaccine and Announcement

On Friday, October 16, Pfizer released a tentative timetable for their vaccine’s progress and the major milestones it still needs to hit. What came to light was how close the company was to reaching the initial steps needed for widespread distribution. Pfizer is currently running a large-scale study on the vaccine’s effectiveness, which is nearing a close soon. In fact, the company should be able to see results coming in by the end of this month, and more importantly, could come to major conclusions on these results by the third week of November. If the study’s conclusions prove to be positive, it would mean that Pfizer would immediately apply for approval from the FDA for emergency authorization, which could bring an effective vaccine one step closer to widespread distribution.

Pfizer’s clinical trial currently involves 44,000 different participants, with half given two shots of the actual vaccine developed by Pfizer and German company BioNTech SE, and half given two shots of a placebo. The participants in the trial nor the investigators or company executives are aware of who has received what. Instead, there is an independent committee that is tasked with examining the results and data and determining its effectiveness and safety. If the FDA does approve Pfizer’s vaccine for emergency use, that is still a slightly lower standard of safety than what is required for overall approval, but would still be significant. Considering that Johnson & Johnson recently paused their own trial and AstraZeneca is still refraining from resuming trials in the United States, this would put Pfizer in the lead for releasing their vaccine to the public. The business world reacted accordingly to this being the case.

Pfizer Stock and Future

After announcing the current track and timetable for the company’s vaccine, Pfizer saw their stock bump by 3.83% on Friday before the market closed. However, it was not just Pfizer that saw a boost as global markets all benefited from the news. With a vaccine drawing nearer, it gave hope to many investors looking at the path to economic recovery in 2021. The possibility of having a largely immune population who can safely interact, shop, and attend large events could seriously turn around what has been a fairly disastrous year for the economy thus far. This paired with better than expected retail sales month-over-month has led to the third consecutive week of US stock gains. While obviously still cautiously optimistic at best, the news that Pfizer is potentially ready for some level of distribution by the end of November provides more optimism for 2021, which is expected to show at least better numbers than 2020.

Final Conclusions

Pfizer’s vaccine possibly being approved for emergency use by the end of November is a massive milestone in the race for treatments and vaccines. In a year that has been completely gripped by the COVID-19 pandemic, news from Pfizer both lifts the hopes of the public health status as it stands, but also the economic world looking on. To become the first viable vaccine on the market would be a gargantuan moment for Pfizer, who would likely reap the benefits of the investing community. However, even if Pfizer is not to be successful, several other vaccines are mere months away from reaching similar points, meaning the outlook for the future of economic recovery globally remains cautiously optimistic.

About the Author


Headshot of Thomas Price

Tom Price is a writer focusing on Entertainment and Sports Features. He has a degree from NYU in English with a minor in Creative Writing. He has been previously published for Washington Square News, Dignitas, CBR, and Numbers on the Boards.

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