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REPORT: How Big Pharma Corporations Are Profiteering From The Global COVID Pandemic Without A Vaccine

New Report Shows How Big Pharma Companies Are Profiteering From The Global COVID Pandemic Without A Vaccine

Report Highlights Corporate Executives’ Use of Operation Warp Speed Funding and Trial Results to Manipulate Their Stock Values and Cash In

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Lower Drug Prices Now released a new report, “Pandemic Profiteering: How Pharma Insiders Are Using News of Government Awards and Trial Results to Boost Their Stock Prices and Profiteer Without a Vaccine,” that shows how Big Pharma corporate executives and industry insiders are profiteering from the COVID-19 pandemic. The report highlights how executives and insiders are using news of Operation Warp Speed contracts as well as clinical trial results to drive speculation, inflate stock prices and pocket hundreds of millions without any guarantee of a safe and effective vaccine.

“Unfortunately history is repeating itself,” said Margarida Jorge, national campaign director for Lower Drug Prices Now. “Just as in every other modern health crisis, this industry is exploiting the desperate need for a COVID vaccine to line their own pockets. But the shameless use of taxpayer resources to capitalize on a hyper-focused news cycle is a new low, and a blatant display of Big Pharma’s corporate greed. Policymakers have a clear opportunity to rein in the pharmaceutical industry’s rampant profiteering and finally prioritize the health and safety of the American people. Our leaders can either take action now, or wait until it’s too late and the ‘vaccine bubble’ bursts, leaving a select few millions richer while patients, investors and taxpayers are worse off.”

Key findings from the report:

  • From January to August, the stock market value for the eight biotech companies on the S&P 500 grew by $130 billion.
  • During the same period, executives and insiders from just three of these companies — Moderna, Inovio and Vaxart — made at least $370 million in sales of company stocks inflated by news of government awards and trial results.
  • Many of these stock price increases and sales immediately followed news of Operation Warp Speed contracts and clinical trial results.
  • A handful of wealthy insiders have sold these inflated stocks in order to profit from public investment, while patients, consumers, and long-term institutional investors have reaped little benefit.

The report shows how key players in the race to develop a COVID vaccine have used round-the-clock media coverage to drive speculation based purely on preliminary examples of success or in some cases unsubstantiated scientific claims. The report also raises the concerns of large institutional investors on the brazen use of these high-risk financial schemes, and the long-term implications of the many industry insiders sitting at the helm of a public healthcare crisis.

Read the full report here.

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