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Moderna lowers forecast for 2021 COVID-19 vaccine deliveries

Moderna is scaling back expectations for the number of COVID-19 vaccine deliveries it expects to make this year and the revenue it will record from them.

Longer delivery lead times for exports and a temporary impact from expanding its fill-finish capacity may shift some deliveries to early 2022, the drugmaker said Thursday. The company now expects full-year, 2021 product sales of between $15 billion and $18 billion.

That’s down from a prediction for $20 billion in sales that it made in August.

Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine is the only product the drugmaker has on the market. It brought in $4.81 billion in sales during the third quarter, up from $4.2 billion the previous quarter.

The Cambridge, Massachusetts, company also reported on Thursday third-quarter results that missed expectations.

Moderna earned $3.3 billion on about $5 billion in total revenue, which includes some grants and collaboration revenue.

Earnings per share were $7.70 in the quarter that ended Sept. 30, well short of the $9.09 that Wall Street had expected, according to a survey by FactSet. Industry analysts were also expecting revenue closer to $6.2 billion.

Company shares fell almost 11% before the opening bell.

Moderna Inc. makes one of three COVID-19 vaccines currently being used in the United States. The others are made by Pfizer Inc. and Johnson & Johnson.

Moderna has an emergency use authorization for the vaccine in adults but is still waiting for regulators to grant a similar authorization for 12- to 17-year olds. The company said recently the regulator review could last until January.

Moderna also said it will delay filing a request for emergency-use authorization of a lower dose of the vaccine for 6- to 11-year-olds while it waits for that review. Pfizer just received that authorization.

About 160 million doses of Moderna’s two-shot vaccine have been administered in the United States. That compares to 248.6 million doses of Pfizer’s vaccine and about 15.7 million for J&J, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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