Stock markets are rallying as AstraZeneca resumes work after a short break in its clinical trials of the COVID-19 vaccine.
The global stock market surged on Monday amid progress on a coronavirus vaccine by pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca Plc (LON: AZN). As a result, the U.S. stock futures jumped more than 1%. Also, Europe’s tech sector added 1% after Nvidia Corporation (NASDAQ: NVDA) unveiled plans to buy UK-based chip designer Arm from SoftBank Group Corp (OTC: SFTBY). Worth $40 billion, the deal will help Nvidia expand into the semiconductor market.
Global Stock Markets Surged as AstraZeneca Progresses on Its COVID-19 Vaccine
Over the weekend, AstraZeneca announced that phase-3 trials for its coronavirus vaccine have resumed in the UK. This is after health regulators said that it was safe to continue with the process. Following the announcement, world stocks rallied on Monday.
The pharmaceutical and biopharmaceutical company and some biotechs have been working on an effective vaccine for the persisting virus. On the 9th of September, AstraZeneca took a break from its vaccine trials after one of the participants developed an unexplained illness.
Lately, President Trump has been asking companies working on the vaccine to produce one before the 3rd of November election. Many are now concerned Trump’s request could pressure the companies to create an unsafe and ineffective vaccine.
Chief market analyst at CMC Markets UK Michael Hewson commented:
“The news over the weekend that AstraZeneca clinical trials had resumed is likely to be well received. However, it is unlikely to assuage concerns that the speed with which these trials are being done could result in a vaccine being rushed out too hastily, with unforeseen circumstances.”
In response, the company posted a tweet pledging to adhere to science and safety in its development of a vaccine. Apart from AstraZeneca, some other companies like BioNTech SE (NASDAQ: BNTX) and Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) also promised to deliver safe and effective vaccines. The other companies that promised safe vaccines include GlaxoSmithKline Plc (NYSE: GSK), Moderna Inc (NASDAQ: MRNA), Merck & Co Inc (NYSE: MRK), Sanofi SA (NASDAQ: SNY), Pfizer Inc (NYSE: PFE).
AstraZeneca’s Vaccine Candidate
Before the temporary break, AstraZeneca was one of the leading companies in the COVID-19 vaccine race. Coinspeaker earlier reported that President Donald Trump considered fast-tracking the company’s vaccine candidate AZD1222, which was developed in collaboration with Oxford University.
AstraZeneca’s stock has been surging since the year began. Since the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the coronavirus pandemic on the 11th of March, the company’s stock has been mostly up. AZN has surged 23.38% in the last twelve months and nearly 10% in its year-to-date performance.
Also, the pharmaceutical company has jumped 1.01% in the last three months and 1.03% in the last five days. However, AstraZeneca fell 2.49% in the past month.
On Monday, major currencies were stable, with the pound maintaining more than 1-1/5 lows over the dollar GBP. Also, the dollar was weaker at 106 yen. However, this is an increase over the dollar’s low this year of 101.1. Likewise, EUR was stronger at $1.1857.
In addition, commodities also jumped. The U.S. crude climbed 0.6% to $37.55 per barrel. Also, a barrel of Brent crude added 0.4% to $40.
However, gold stood firm at $1,946.9 per ounce.
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