The Pfizer logo at their world headquarters in New York, the US. Picture: REUTERS/ANDREW KELLY
The Pfizer logo at their world headquarters in New York, the US. Picture: REUTERS/ANDREW KELLY

New York — Pfizer shares fell on Tuesday after CEO Albert Bourla said 2021 adjusted earnings would be between $3 and $3.10 per share, less than what analysts were expecting.

The shares fell as much as 2.3% in New York trading on Tuesday morning. Analysts had expected adjusted earnings per share in 2021 of $3.18, according to a survey of 16 analysts by Bloomberg.

Bourla previewed the company’s earnings guidance while speaking at the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference on Tuesday. He said the number included the likely contribution from the Covid-19 shot that was the first vaccine authorised for emergency use in the US.

“This is a dynamic situation,” Bourla said. A company filing noted the preliminary guidance was subject to uncertainties surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic.

While drugmakers have garnered attention over the past year for racing to develop innovative vaccines and treatments for Covid-19, demand for other forms of care has slowed. That phenomenon has rippled through financial results for a range of health-care companies, from insurers and pharmacies to pharmaceutical companies and health-technology firms.

Pfizer developed its vaccine in partnership with Germany’s BioNTech. On Monday, BioNTech CEO Ugur Sahin said at the same conference that the two companies were boosting their vaccine output goal by more than 50% in response to surging global demand.

Previously, Pfizer and BioNTech had expected to produce 1.3-billion doses in 2020. While the companies plan to ramp up output with the help of contract manufacturers, the new target also takes into account a label change that allows doctors to extract six doses instead of five from each vaccine vial, BioNTech said.


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