Minnesota DOH reports first U.S. case of COVID-19 variant first found in Brazil » 17:3701/2501/25/21
SPX, SPY, PFE, BNTX, MRNA, AZN, JNJ, NVAX
The Minnesota Department…
The Minnesota Department of Health announced that its Public Health Laboratory has found the variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus known as the Brazil P.1 variant in a specimen from a Minnesota resident with recent travel history to Brazil. While this variant is thought to be more transmissible than the initial strain of the virus that causes COVID-19 disease, it is not yet known whether the variant causes more severe illness. This case marks the first documented instance of the Brazil P.1 variant in the United States. The variant was found through the MDH's variant surveillance program. Each week this program collects 50 random samples from the University of Minnesota clinical laboratories, Infinity Biologix Laboratory in Oakdale, and other testing partners and then conducts special testing using a process called whole genome sequencing. Through this program, the state develops a more accurate picture of what specific forms of COVID-19 are circulating in Minnesota. Companies in the COVID-19 vaccine space include Pfizer (PFE), BioNTech (BNTX), Moderna (MRNA), AstraZeneca (AZN), Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), and Novavax (NVAX). Reference Link
Fly Intel: Wall Street's top stories for Monday » 16:4301/2501/25/21
GME, MRK, MRNA, PFE, NCR, CATM, APO, SON, CCK, BBBY, AMC, SOL, GLUU
The major averages had a…
Fly Intel: Wall Street's top stories at midday » 12:1801/2501/25/21
MRK, GME, MRNA, PFE, NCR, CATM, APO, BBBY, BB, SOL, MGNI
The major averages are…
Moderna call volume above normal and directionally bullish » 10:0501/2501/25/21
Bullish option flow…
Bullish option flow detected in Moderna with 12,881 calls trading, 1.0x expected, and implied vol increasing almost 5 points to 77.49%. Feb-21 125 puts and 1/29 weekly 150 calls are the most active options, with total volume in those strikes near 6,100 contracts. The Put/Call Ratio is 0.57. Earnings are expected on February 24th.
Fly Intel: Top five analyst downgrades » 09:5201/2501/25/21
GME, WMT, DDD, ALNY, BOX
Catch up on today's…
Catch up on today's top five analyst downgrades with this list compiled by The Fly: 1. GameStop (GME) double downgraded to Underperform from Outperform at Telsey Advisory with analyst Joseph Feldman saying he sees a "disconnect" between GameStop's fundamentals and its valuation following the recent surge in the shares. 2. Walmart (WMT) downgraded to Sell from Hold at R5 Capital with analyst Scott Mushkin saying his visits to approximately 40 supercenters across multiple states revealed four "long-term fundamental problems" he sees the company needing to fix; its freshness standards need a significant upgrade; its out-of-stocks, overstocks and understocks must all be addressed and corrected; and more capital needs to be invested, particularly to improve its omnichannel offerings. 3. 3D Systems (DDD) downgraded to Hold from Buy at Berenberg with analyst Kenneth Vallace saying the risk/reward is less favorable following the stock's recent rally. 4. Alnylam (ALNY) downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at BMO Capital with analyst Do Kim saying given the stock's 35% single-week run-up in early January and "limited" catalysts to drive further "meaningful" upside this year, Alnylam shares look "fairly valued." 5. Box (BOX) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at DA Davidson with analyst Rishi Jaluria citing the company's low scores in his CIO survey for 2021 spending intentions, competitive pressure from Microsoft's (MSFT) One Drive and a "more muted" margin expansion as COVID-related cost savings start to fade. This list is just a portion of The Fly's full analyst coverage. To see The Fly's full Street Research coverage, click here.
Piper reiterates $170 target on Moderna with vaccine active on new strains » 09:4701/2501/25/21
Piper Sandler analyst…
Piper Sandler analyst Edward Tenthoff reiterates an Overweight rating on Moderna with a $170 price target after the company announced that mRNA-1273 retained activity and produced neutralizing titers against emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants including the U.K. strain B.1.1.7 and South Africa strain B.1.351. No significant impact on neutralizing titers against the B.1.1.7 variant was observed, although a six-fold reduction in neutralizing titers was observed with the B.1.351 variant versus. prior strains, Tenthoff tells investors in a research note. Despite the slow vaccination pace, Moderna expects to deliver 200M mRNA-1273 doses in the U.S. by end of Q2, and 600M to to 1B doses globally by the end of 2021, the analyst points out. He thinks the SARS-CoV-2 booster vaccine will be able to further boost any of the leading vaccine candidates, which "could provide a revenue tail" for mRNA-1273.
Moderna announces results from COVID-19 Vaccine study against new strains » 08:3201/2501/25/21
Moderna announced results…
Moderna announced results from in vitro neutralization studies of sera from individuals vaccinated with Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine showing activity against emerging strains of SARS-CoV-2. Vaccination with the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine produced neutralizing titers against all key emerging variants tested, including B.1.1.7 and B.1.351, first identified in the UK and Republic of South Africa, respectively. The study showed no significant impact on neutralizing titers against the B.1.1.7 variant relative to prior variants. A six-fold reduction in neutralizing titers was observed with the B.1.351 variant relative to prior variants. Despite this reduction, neutralizing titer levels with B.1.351 remain above levels that are expected to be protective. This study was conducted in collaboration with the Vaccine Research Center, or VRC, at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, or NIAID, part of the National Institutes of Health, or NIH. The manuscript has been submitted as a preprint to bioRxiv and will be submitted for peer-reviewed publication. The two-dose regimen of the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine at the 100 microgram dose is expected to be protective against emerging strains detected to date. Nonetheless, Moderna announced its clinical strategy to proactively address the pandemic as the virus continues to evolve. First, the company will test an additional booster dose of its COVID-19 Vaccine to study the ability to further increase neutralizing titers against emerging strains beyond the existing primary vaccination series. Second, the company is advancing an emerging variant booster candidate against the B.1.351 variant first identified in the Republic of South Africa. The company is advancing mRNA-1273.351 into preclinical studies and a Phase 1 study in the U.S. to evaluate the immunological benefit of boosting with strain-specific spike proteins. Moderna expects that its mRNA-based booster vaccine will be able to further boost neutralizing titers in combination with all of the leading vaccine candidates. First detected in September 2020 in the United Kingdom, the SARS-CoV-2 B.1.1.7 variant has seventeen mutations in the viral genome with eight mutations located in the spike, or S, protein. The B.1.351 variant, first detected in South Africa, has ten mutations located in the spike S protein. Both variants have spread at a rapid rate and are associated with increased transmission and a higher viral burden after infection. The in vitro study assessed the ability of mRNA-1273 to elicit potently neutralizing antibodies against the new SARS-CoV-2 variants, using sera from eight Phase 1 clinical trial participants who received two 100 microgram doses of mRNA-1273, and separately using sera from non-human primates, or NHPs, immunized with two doses of 30 microgram or 100 microgram of mRNA-1273. For the B.1.1.7 variant, neutralizing antibody titers remained high and were generally consistent with neutralizing titers relative to prior variants. No significant impact on neutralization was observed from either the full set of mutations found in the B.1.1.7 variant or from specific key mutations of concern. Although these mutations have been reported to lessen neutralization from convalescent sera and to increase infectivity, sera from the Phase 1 participants and NHPs immunized with mRNA-1273 were able to neutralize the B.1.1.7 variant to the same level as prior variants. For the B.1.351 variant, vaccination with the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine produces neutralizing antibody titers that remain above the neutralizing titers that were shown to protect NHPs against wildtype viral challenge. While thecCompany expects these levels of neutralizing antibodies to be protective, pseudovirus neutralizing antibody titers were approximately 6-fold lower relative to prior variants. These lower titers may suggest a potential risk of earlier waning of immunity to the new B.1.351 strains.
Alnylam downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at BMO Capital » 06:2501/2501/25/21
BMO Capital analyst Do…
BMO Capital analyst Do Kim downgraded Alnylam to Market Perform from Outperform with an unchanged $185 price target. Given the stock's 35% single-week run-up in early January and "limited" catalysts to drive further "meaningful" upside this year, Alnylam shares look "fairly valued", the analyst tells investors in a research note. Vutrisiran HELIOS-A data and Alnylam's 5-year strategy has priced in commercial execution of its drugs for the intermediate term, Kim adds.
Alnylam downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at BMO Capital » 05:3601/2501/25/21
BMO Capital analyst Do…
BMO Capital analyst Do Kim downgraded Alnylam Pharmaceuticals to Market Perform from Outperform with an $185 price target.
Autodesk price target raised to $360 from $295 at Argus » 07:5501/2201/22/21
Argus analyst Joseph…
Argus analyst Joseph Bonner raised the firm's price target on Autodesk to $360 from $295 and keeps a Buy rating on the shares. The impact of the pandemic has continued to slow Autodesk's growth in its "critical" U.S. and UK markets, but other parts of its global business have "picked up substantially" from the COVID-19 trough, the analyst tells investors in a research note. Bonner adds that Autodesk valuations are high, but the company offers a "highly differentiated" software product.