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Pharma

Pfizer, Moderna Lack Key Features for a Winner-Take-All COVID-19 Vaccine

The ideal coronavirus vaccine will be a single shot that is effective, easy to ship, stable at room temperature and have low side effects, especially in vulnerable populations.

But no single candidate has checked all of those boxes despite strong efficacy data coming from the two front runners.

After Challenging 2020, Biopharma CEOs Brace for COVID-19 Variants, Uncertainty

As the global economy continues to reel in the wake of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, leaders at the world's largest pharmaceutical and biotech companies said their industry remains largely on track, particularly as new treatments and vaccines hit the market.

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COVID-19 May Accelerate Disruption In The Global Vaccine Market

Following decades of consolidation, the global vaccine market offers stable and healthy revenue growth, significant barriers to entry, and good profitability, broadly comparable with the broader pharmaceutical industry.

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What Does Pharma’s Quest For A COVID-19 Vaccine Mean For Its Credit Quality And ESG Profile?

The COVID-19 pandemic has placed much of the hope of returning back to normal on the pharmaceutical industry to develop effective treatments and vaccines.

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Economic Recovery

Industry Top Trends 2021 Health Care

The health care industry has held up relatively well through the pandemic, though the impact was uneven across the subsectors, highlighting the more discretionary parts of the industry.

COVID-19’s effect on industries has varied dramatically, and will continue to be felt for years in terms of the growth outlook, financial policy, and credit metrics.

COVID-19 Vaccine Will Discovery Mean A Full Recovery?

Despite hopeful news about the development of several COVID-19 vaccines, widespread availability, distribution, and vaccination are the next big steps toward a new normal and economic recovery.

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A Vaccine Won't Erase All Risks

Credit conditions in emerging markets (EMs) continue to improve following positive news about progress in developing a coronavirus vaccine, which augurs well for a faster recovery over the second half of 2021.

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Supply Chain

Vaccine, PPE Sourcing Likely Behind U.S. Medicine Withdrawal from WTO Supply Chain Pact

The U.S. government has filed to withdraw certain medicines from the WTO’s Government Procurement Agreement rules in order to implement “Buy American” health care sourcing during the pandemic.

Emerging Market Vaccine Distribution Needs Indian Airfreight, Medical Cooperation

The Ottawa Group of the EU and 12 countries has called on governments globally to “withdraw or end any trade restrictive measures introduced in response to COVID-19 as quickly as possible”.

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ESG

The ESG Pulse: COVID-19 Vaccine Hope As Second Wave Sets In

U.S.-based Pfizer Inc. and German partner BioNTech announced last month that the first interim analysis of the phase-3 clinical trial for their COVID-19 vaccine (with more than 40,000 participants) found it was more than 90% effective in preventing COVID-19 and there were no serious side effects observed.

More positive news came when U.S. biotechnology company Moderna announced its vaccine was 94.5% effective in a phase-3 study involving 30,000 participants.

We understand that initially vaccines will be made available to vulnerable populations (which represent a disproportionate share of severe cases) and will substantially reduce the case fatality ratio.

Listen: Beyond The Buzz: The Race For A COVID-19 Vaccine

Mike Ferguson talks to pharma credit analyst Tulip Lim about how pharma companies are ensuring affordability and access, how they're responding to pressure, and how prepared the industry is to face the pandemic.

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First in Human: Big Pharma Eyes Diverse Population Data in COVID-19 Vaccine Race

When Moderna Inc. realized that clinical trials for the company's experimental coronavirus vaccine were not diverse enough, executives pumped the brakes, even as the world eagerly awaited any good news on a preventative treatment for COVID-19.

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Market Volatility

Emerging Currency Index Logs Best Month in 2 Years on Biden Win, Vaccine Hopes

The MSCI International Emerging Market Currency Index, which measures the performance of 26 emerging-market currencies relative to the U.S. dollar, rose 2.2% in November.

That marked the sixth consecutive monthly rise and the largest gain since January 2019, when the index jumped 2.6%.

Twenty of the 21 emerging-market currencies tracked by S&P Global Market Intelligence posted gains in November, with the Colombian peso and Turkish lira outperforming the pack with gains of 7.4% and 7.2%, respectively.

U.S. Short Sellers Shrink Back as Vaccine Optimism Rises

Vaccine optimism drove down short interest in all sectors of the S&P 500 in the first half of November as investors recalibrated their outlooks amid a series of positive vaccine developments and stocks soared to all-time highs.

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Vaccine Hopes Reverse Pandemic Stock Trends, but Effect may not Last

Pandemic plays are out and reopening plays are in, but the staying power of the equity market's latest trend will largely depend on the viability of a vaccine.

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Tech Short Sellers Poised for Rotation as Vaccine Buoys Value Stocks

Short interest in U.S. communication services stocks rose to 4.7% at the end of October.

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Commodities

Vaccine Breakthroughs Lift Commodities to 6-Month High in November

Commodity futures climbed to a six-month high in November amid a series of COVID-19 vaccine breakthroughs and growing clarity on the outcome of the U.S. presidential election.

Industrial Commodities Benefit from Hopeful COVID-19 Vaccine News

November proved to be a good month for risk assets, including commodities.

The headline S&P GSCI rose 12.0%, outperforming the S&P 500®, which gained 10.8%.

Promising developments on the COVID-19 vaccine front and the U.S. election outcome rewarded risk assets such as energy and industrial metals, while safe-haven assets like gold lost some luster.

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Travel

Analysis: Singapore's Phase 3 reopening, impending vaccine drive bode well for Asian aviation

Singapore's Phase 3 reopening from Dec. 28 and imminent vaccines rollout herald positive news for the Asian jet fuel industry, which has struggled due to the massive slump in demand, reflecting the colossal challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic, industry sources said.

Singapore's Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, in a nationwide address on Dec. 14, announced Phase 3 of the country's reopening, which will include easing capacity limits in public places like malls and attractions, while also giving an update on the COVID-19 situation in the country.

Aviation Looks to Vaccine for Boost in Demand

Jet fuel took center stage at the recent International Air Transport Association Fuel Forum, as the industry grapples with the demand destruction due to air travel restrictions, but also paves the way for a clear decarbonisation agenda.

Jet fuel and derivatives editors Emma Thomas and Christopher Ewen join Francesco Di Salvo to reflect on the key takeaways from the event and the impact on the markets for conventional and sustainable aviation fuels.

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