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COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution and Herd Immunity to End Pandemic

Successful vaccine development and rollout will boost industry goodwill and reduce ESG risk, but we’re keeping our valuations steady.

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In this first of three articles, we give our outlook for the COVID-19 vaccine market and distribution. Subsequent articles will cover coronavirus treatments and the prospects for the companies involved. 

Following a year with more than 83 million cases and 1.8 million deaths reported globally due to COVID-19, 2021 begins with two newly authorized vaccines being distributed to high-priority populations in the United States and Europe. These mRNA vaccines from Pfizer/BioNTech (PFE)/(BNTX) and Moderna (MRNA) have set a high bar for efficacy and safety, and they appear poised to ramp up supply and dominate the U.S. market throughout the first half of the year, supporting a foundation for herd immunity in the U.S. by midyear. With additional support from Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), Novavax (NVAX), AstraZeneca (AZN), and Chinese and Russian vaccine programs, global herd immunity looks achievable by 2023.

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Karen Andersen does not own shares in any of the securities mentioned above. Find out about Morningstar’s editorial policies.