Monday, May 18, 2020: Wall Street extended its rally today as the Dow Jones climbed over 900 points, emboldened by news that Moderna’s (MRNA: US) early-stage trial for mRNA-1273, a COVID-19 vaccine candidate, resulted in neutralizing antibodies being produced in participants. “These interim Phase 1 data, while early, demonstrate that vaccination with mRNA-1273 elicits an immune response of the magnitude caused by natural infection starting with a dose as low as 25 µg,” said Moderna’s Chief Medical Officer Tal Zaks in a press release. The efficacy of any vaccine, it should be noted, is predicated on whether or not antibodies produced following exposure to the virus provide protection against future infection. In the case of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, that is still unknown. The Dow closed up 911 points or 3.85%, while MRNA closed up 20%.
Chinese eCommerce leader JD.com (JD: US) closed up 9.2%, trading at new all-time highs after new price targets set by Bank of America ($60.00), HSBC ($60.00), and Goldman Sachs ($59.00), among others. JD remains the subject of popular long and short ideas on SumZero’s buyside community.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Uber (UBER: US) cut 3000 more jobs and shut 45 offices as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt business across all sectors. “I will not make any claims with absolute certainty regarding our future,” CEO Dara Khosrowshahi wrote in a note to employees. “I will tell you, however, that we are making really, really hard choices now, so that we can say our goodbyes, have as much clarity as we can, move forward, and start to build again with confidence.” UBER closed up 3.6%.
An informal poll conducted by SumZero on Twitter had self-reporting professional buyside investors giving their thoughts on returning to the office as the COVID-19 pandemic is slowly brought under control. Only 16.7% of respondents expressed a desire to return to the office full-time, with a majority of respondents – 55% – indicating a preference for a mixture of home and office work going forward. Due to the inherent flaws in the poll design – it's Twitter, after all – we cannot say that these results are statistically significant: only that they may suggest new mindsets when it comes to working in finance.
Professional investors (PMs, MDs, CIOs, etc): for those of you who were working in an office, but are currently working from home, which would you prefer when your state's distancing measures end:— SumZero (@SumZero) May 11, 2020
Earnings reports before market open tomorrow May 19, 2020 (SumZero buyside research linked):