MRNA

Moderna Stock Has 33% Upside, According to 1 Wall Street Analyst

Regarding Moderna (NASDAQ: MRNA) stock, RBC Capital analyst Luca Issi is bullish. Per his price target of $125 that he reiterated on Feb. 23, the biotech's shares could rise by 30% to reach $125. There are a few upcoming developments that could stimulate the stock to grow in the way that Issi predicts.

Management expects its respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) vaccine will pick up a few regulatory approvals in the first half of the year, paving the way for worldwide launches, with sales revenue to follow. Separately, the company is also planning to complete its phase 3 clinical trials for its next-generation coronavirus jab, as well as for its combination COVID-19 and flu vaccine program. But that might not be enough to make the stock hit Issi's target.

This biotech's coronavirus shot blues are likely to continue

In 2022, Moderna brought in $18.9 billion in revenue, but in 2023, it only reported $6.7 billion as a result of dramatically decreasing demand for its coronavirus immunizations. This year, management is signaling that sales will total around $4 billion.

There is unlikely to be any new clinical trial data or product launches from Moderna's portfolio that are capable of convincing investors that the business is worth as much in 2024 as it was in 2021 or 2022. Shareholders are banking on that issue shifting in their favor over the long term. But for now, its most lucrative projects, like its personalized cancer vaccine (PCV) candidate in phase 3 trials, will take a bit longer before delivering high-impact data or significant regulatory catalysts like approval.

So will Issi's price target come to fruition? It's possible if the RSV vaccine sells very strongly in the run-up to the wintertime respiratory disease season, but it is not very likely.

Don't let that stop you from making an investment in Moderna for the purposes of a long-term hold, however. Few biotech stocks have Moderna's unique combination of a proven platform and recurring revenue from coronavirus vaccine sales.

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Alex Carchidi has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Moderna. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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