European markets rally over AstraZeneca vaccine hopes

European markets rally over AstraZeneca vaccine hopes

The resumption of the Phase 3 trials of AstraZeneca’s coronavirus vaccine in the U.K. has triggered European markets to rally.

European markets became optimistic to start the week as they traded higher today. The pan-European Stoxx 600 went up as high as 0.6% at the start of trading, with tech stocks giving a 1.1% boost.

AstraZeneca has received confirmation from the United Kingdom’s Medicines Health Regulatory Authority that it was safe to resume clinical trials together with the University of Oxford as the trial sponsor.

What illness transpired during the trial?

Last week, AstraZeneca reported a pause on their clinical trials as they were reviewing an unexplained illness that occurred. In addition, also said that this routine action was necessary to maintain the integrity of the trials.

An anonymous source that was interviewed by The New York Times and reportedly said that the afflicted volunteer had experienced symptoms consistent with a condition called transverse myelitis, or inflammation of the spinal cord.

However, the company did not disclose in its latest press release on what disease transpired and went on to resume with the AZD1222 clinical trial. As of this writing, AstraZeneca shares slightly dipped below 0.5%.

Other European stocks are boosting the rally

As per CNBC, Dassault Aviation shares jumped early trade to lead the Stoxx 600 after reports that 18 of its Rafale fighter jets are being ordered by the Greek Air Force and the stock price currently hovering above 8%. British Airways parent IAG also gained 4%.

Belgian pharmaceutical firm Galapagos slightly fell around 2.77% at the other end of the European blue-chip index.

The vaccine race continues

While AstraZeneca has resumed its vaccine trials, other companies are also stepping up into developing the vaccine. Over in the U.S., Pfizer Inc. Chief Executive Officer Albert Bourla said it’s “likely” that they will deploy a treatment to the public before year-end as per Bloomberg.

In a report from National Geographic, more than 150 coronavirus vaccines are in development across the world and it has been the main spotlight that is keeping the markets afloat.

It looks like the investors’ focus for this week will be on the narratives of the COVID-19 vaccine developments.

Featured image courtesy of Chokniti Khongchum/Pixabay

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