05.18.20 - Stocks rallied this morning as governments and drugmakers are weighing how to roll out coronavirus vaccines, including reserving the first batches for health-care workers, as several shots race to early leads. The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 835 points or 3.5%, the S&P 500 rose 3.1% and the Nasdaq Composite added 2.5%.
Of more than 100 vaccines in development globally, at least eight have started human clinical trials including candidates from Moderna and Pfizer Inc. At the same time, pharmaceutical giants like Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca, and Sanofi are building the capacity to manufacture hundreds of millions of doses.
The efforts are part of a larger rush, including at the White House, to line up funding for accelerated testing and expanded manufacturing capacity, all to make doses available in the US as early as this fall.
A safe and effective vaccine is the best way to prevent Covid-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new coronavirus, and to curb its transmission, public-health officials say. Drugmakers say they are developing potential coronavirus vaccines at remarkably fast speeds.
Yet there isn’t a guarantee that any of the most advanced vaccine candidates will prove to work safely on such a short timetable. Some, like vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna, are based on relatively new technologies that haven’t been approved previously.
Source: Wall Street Journal