Pfizer Inc shares slid as much as 3.5% in premarket trading (before bouncing back) after the company forecasted COVID-19 vaccine sales for 2023 would miss the average Wall Street estimate by more than $2.5 billion.
The New York-based drug company expects Covid vaccine sales this year to be around $13.5 billion, below analysts’ $16 billion forecast. Sales for its Covid pill Paxlovid were forecasted at about $8 billion, below the $9.2 billion expected by analysts.
Pfizer expects revenue for Covid-19 vaccines and pills to slide this year because of large government stockpiles but might see an increase in sales in 2024.
Revenue might fall even more this year as Americans appear to be pushing back on getting booster after booster.
Additionally, President Biden is expected to declare an end to the Covid national and public health emergencies on May 11.
Pfizer projects revenue this year to be between $67 billion and $71 billion after skyrocketing 23% to $100 billion in 2022.
For the fourth quarter, revenue was up by 2% to $24.29 billion, supported by the growth in the primary care business as Covid vaccine demand slumped.
Pfizer shares dropped as much as 3.5% in premarket trading. Shares are down 12.5% since topping around $54.70 in December.
But, as things tend to do, Pfizer shares were panic-bid back into the green as the cash market opened…
Analysts have been concerned about Covid vaccine demand woes this year, leading Wells Fargo’s Mohit Bansal to downgrade the company from a buy in mid-January to equal weight. Bansal was concerned about near-term earnings risk due to falling demand for Covid products.
UBS analyst Colin Bristow cut Pfizer to neutral from buy, reiterating Bansal’s point about slumping demand for Covid products and a product pipeline that’s “not quite ready for prime time.”
There are currently nine buys and 15 holds, though no sells on Pfizer by analysts. Their average 12-month target is around $53.44.
What’s clear in this quarterly report is that Americans are pushing back against taking their gene therapy drug that government officials, big pharma, mainstream media, celebrities, and anyone else pushed so hard over the last few years.