Another Record High for MRNA Following Vaccine Update

The vaccine is 94% effective, according to company data

Assistant Editor
Nov 30, 2020 at 10:37 AM
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New data confirms that Moderna Inc's (NASDAQ:MRNA) COVID-19 vaccine is more than 94% effective, and the company is planning to request emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today. This means Americans could potentially get the first doses of the two-dose vaccine within the next few weeks. As a result, MRNA is up 14.6%, last seen trading at a new all-time high of $145.82.

Moderna stock has locked in five record-high closes over the last nine sessions, with today's rise marking the stock's third straight. Meanwhile, the equity's 10-day moving average has guided MRNA higher, and captured at least one small pullback over the last month. Longer term, the security has tacked on an incredible 659% in 2020.

Today's options pits are flashing a flurry of activity on both sides of the fence, though calls are still handily outpacing puts. In the first hour of trading, over 78,000 calls and 25,000 puts have already exchanged hands -- four times the intraday average, with volume pacing in the 99th percentile of its annual range. The two most popular contracts are the weekly 12/4 145- and 150-strike calls, with positions being opened at both. 

This positive price action has short sellers hitting the exits. In fact, short interest is down 9.7% in the last two reporting periods. The 24.68 million shares sold short still account for a healthy 7.6% of the stock's available float, though, which could propel MRNA even higher, should even more of this pessimism begin to unwind. 

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