Novavax Stock Reclaims $200 Level After Vaccine Update

At least one analyst hiked its price target on NVAX

Assistant Editor
Mar 12, 2021 at 9:39 AM
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The shares of Novavax, Inc. (NASDAQ:NVAX) are surging in pre-market trading, up 9% at $205.78, after the drugmaker announced its coronavirus vaccine was highly effective against both the original and U.K. variant strains of the virus. According to the company, the vaccine was 96% effective against the original version, and 86% effective against the more contagious variant. 

NVAX has once again reclaimed the $200 level for the first time in over a week. Going into today, the shares were down 40% in the last month, but the damage was contained by their 100-day moving average. 

In response to the vaccine update, H.C. Wainwright hit NVAX with a massive price-target hike to $317 from $207. While the majority of analysts are bullish on the drugmaker -- five of six in coverage with "strong buy" rating -- a whopping 22% of the stock's total available float is sold short. 

It looks like the options pits are rather bullish, per the stock's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) that sits in the lowest possible percentile of the past 12 months. This means short-term traders have rarely been more call-biased. 

NVAX options are quite cheap at the moment. The equity's Schaeffer's Volatility Index (SVI) of 118% sits higher than only 14% of all other readings from the past year. In other words, options players are pricing in lower-than-usual volatility expectations right now. What's more, the equity's Schaeffer's Volatility Scorecard (SVS) sits at an elevated 89 out of 100, suggesting the security has exceeded volatility expectations during the past year.

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