AstraZeneca Revises Vaccine Efficacy Rate, Stock Inches Higher

Short sellers have been coming out in droves lately

Deputy Editor
Mar 25, 2021 at 10:07 AM
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The shares of AstraZeneca plc (NASDAQ:AZN) have seen a lot of movement lately, with the drugmaker's Covid-19 vaccine popping up in the news almost daily. Once again, the security is making headlines today, after announcing that previous claims that its vaccine was 79% effective against protecting patients from coronavirus symptoms during its phase three trial were incorrect, and that the vaccine actually has a 76% efficacy rate. The security is attempting to brush off this gaff, and was last seen up 0.3% to trade at $48.89.

As we mentioned, it's been bumpy road for AZN during the past year. While Monday's news allowed the equity to briefly top its 80-day moving average -- a trendline that's more or less kept a lid on shares since last September -- the takeover was brief, and now the equity is struggling just below its year-to-date breakeven, though it still sports a year-over-year lead of around 21%. 

Amid all the chaos, short sellers have been piling on AZN, with short interest up 30.9% in the last two reporting periods. There's still plenty of room on this bearish bandwagon, however, as the 86.28 million shares sold short make up just 3.3% of AZN's available float. 



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