Download now: Cannabis Cash

The Cluster of COVID Vaccines Is Raising Eyebrows

Written by Luke Burgess
Posted November 23, 2020

Something seems a bit fishy about the recent crest of coronavirus vaccines...

This morning, AstraZeneca announced clinical trials of its COVID vaccine showed to have an average efficacy of 70% in protecting against the virus.

It was the third Monday morning in a row a major pharmaceutical company announced a coronavirus vaccine with a high efficacy rate.

This morning, it was AstraZeneca. Last Monday morning, American biotech firm Moderna announced its experimental vaccine was 94.5% effective in preventing the virus. The Monday morning before that, Pfizer said its vaccine was more than 90% effective.

Clearly, these companies intentionally chose Monday mornings to announce their positive news. But that's not really the fishy part. Announcing positive news on Monday mornings — and, alternatively, negative news on Friday afternoons — is a commonplace practice in both the private and government sectors.

The fishy part is that these announcements are clustered so close together.

What are the odds AstraZeneca, Moderna, and Pfizer all concluded their clinical trials with this previously unknown virus and had enough confidence to publicly announce efficacy rates within three weeks of each other?

They're low, I'll tell you that.

These trials took place over a period of 25–28 days. So for them to conclude their results at the same time would mean they would have had to begin around the same time, too. That's possible but seems quite unlikely if you ask me.

I'm speculating here, of course. But it seems more likely to me that these companies concluded these clinical trials weeks ago and are just now announcing results, which they know will boost public confidence as well as their respective share prices.

Why would pharmaceutical companies want to delay announcement of results?

Well, if you asked them, they'd probably say it has something to do with safety. But I really think the election had a lot to do with it.

The healthcare industry, in the U.S. at least, leans left. And it leans left pretty hard. Of course, there's a pretty good reason for that: The Affordable Care Act was probably the biggest gift the healthcare industry ever received. Just take a look at how major healthcare stocks fared under Obama:

UnitedHealth Group
unh11/20

Cigna
ci11/20

McKesson
mck11/20

AmerisourceBergen
abc11/20

Cardinal Health
cah11/20

Hell, if I were a healthcare group, I'd lay down in the street to get another liberal in office.

The healthcare industry is going to support Democrats. And we all know exactly what would have happened if these vaccine efficacy announcements were made in the weeks just prior to the election: Trump would have taken credit for them.

So I have to wonder — when exactly were these clinical trials completed? And how long did these companies wait to release news of the results?

Now, I imagine there are many investors thinking, Shut up, Luke. My stocks are going up right now. Don't rock the boat.

Well, that's great. But if my speculation is correct and these companies did in fact wait several weeks before releasing their news, your stocks could have been even higher today.

Let's hypothetically say for a minute that Pfizer concluded its clinical trials in August. Had it released news about the efficacy rates, we'd be two months further into recovery today.

Again, all of this is just speculation. But it seems very unlikely three major pharmaceutical companies all have recent vaccine news to announce all at the same time.

Will there be a fourth vaccine announcement next Monday?

We'll see.

Until next time,
Luke Burgess Signature
Luke Burgess

As an editor at Energy and Capital, Luke’s analysis and market research reach hundreds of thousands of investors every day. Luke is also a contributing editor of Angel Publishing’s Bull and Bust Report newsletter. There, he helps investors in leveraging the future supply-demand imbalance that he believes could be key to a cyclical upswing in the hard asset markets. For more on Luke, go to his editor’s page.

Hydrogen Fuel Cells: The Downfall of Tesla?