© Reuters. A medical worker prepares a dose of the “Comirnaty” Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in a vaccination center in Nantes, France, October 6, 2021. REUTERS/Stephane Mahe/Files
By Michael Erman
(Reuters) -Advisers to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are meeting on Tuesday to consider how broadly Pfizer (NYSE:) and BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine should be rolled out among children ages 5 to 11, with shots potentially going into young arms as soon as Wednesday.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted emergency use https://www.reuters.com/world/us/us-fda-expected-authorize-first-covid-19-vaccine-young-children-friday-nyt-2021-10-29 authorization of the vaccine in the age group on Friday, but CDC Director Rochelle Walensky must make her recommendations before the United States can begin administering the vaccine to children in the age group.
Walensky kicked off the meeting with an address to the advisers, noting that the recent Delta variant wave saw pediatric hospital admissions rise “higher than they had in any previous wave of the pandemic.” She said the rate reached 25 hospitalizations per 100,000 per year in children aged 5 to 11.
The CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) is expected to vote on vaccine recommendations for the age group later on Tuesday.
Walensky will weigh the panel’s recommendations, but is not bound to follow them. She disregarded their advice last month, when she issued a broader recommendation https://www.reuters.com/world/us/us-cdc-advisers-weigh-moderna-jj-covid-19-vaccine-boosters-mix-and-match-shots-2021-10-21 for booster doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine than the panel had supported.
The U.S. government and Pfizer have already begun distributing the vaccine in preparation for a widespread rollout for children, many of whom are back in school for in-person learning.
“Over the next couple of days, several million doses will start arriving at local pediatricians and family doctors offices, pharmacies, children’s hospitals, community health centers, rural health clinics and other locations,” White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator Jeff Zients said at a press briefing on Monday.
Zients said the United States has enough supply of the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine for all 28 million children aged 5 to 11. While some children may be able to get their first shots as soon as Wednesday, Zients said the U.S. pediatric vaccine program will be running at full strength by next week.
The FDA authorized a 10-microgram dose of Pfizer’s vaccine in young children. The original shot given to those age 12 and older is 30 micrograms.
Advisers to the FDA last week said the lower dose could help mitigate some of the rare side effects. At their meeting, they paid close attention to the rate of a heart inflammation called myocarditis that has been linked to the vaccines from Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna (NASDAQ:), primarily in young men.
The CDC’s advisers will weigh Pfizer’s data as well as hear a review of the risks of myocarditis in children linked to vaccines versus other causes of myocarditis, including from COVID-19. They are expected to consider recommendations for advising parents about the potential risks.
The FDA is still reviewing Moderna’s vaccine application in teenagers as it works to understand the rate of myocarditis linked to that vaccine. Moderna said on Sunday it will delay seeking authorization of its vaccine in younger kids while the FDA completes its review for 12- to 17-year-olds that may take until January.
In the United States, around 58% of the population is fully vaccinated, lagging other nations such as the UK and France.
The share of young children who receive the shots may be even lower. Only about 47% of U.S. youth aged 12 to 15 are vaccinated.
U.S. states with the highest adult COVID-19 vaccination rates are planning a big vaccine push compared with states where hesitancy remains strong, potentially widening the gaps in protection nationwide, public health officials and experts have said.
Stats had a positive effect on the European stock market. European growth stocks
West European stock indexes closed Wednesday’s trading with a confident growth. Traders evaluated the fresh batch of statistics and bought European growth stocks.
What influenced European stocks to high growth?
GDP volume in France rose 0.2% in the third quarter compared to the previous three months, final data from the national statistics institute Insee showed. The final data coincided with a preliminary estimate. Analysts, on average, had not expected a revision, according to a Trading Economics survey. GDP growth slowed from a 0.5% rebound in the second quarter.
Consumer prices in France, harmonized with European Union standards, rose 7.1% year-over-year in November. Insee also reported. The November rate of increase in consumer prices coincided with that of October, and analysts polled by Trading Economics expected inflation to remain at the same level.
Consumer spending in the country collapsed by 2.8% in October compared with the previous month. Analysts polled by Bloomberg expected a more moderate decline of 1 percent. The consensus forecast of experts polled by Trading Economics envisioned a 0.6% decline. The decrease in consumer spending was the maximum since April 2021.
The number of unemployed in Germany increased by 17 thousand in November, according to the Federal Employment Agency of Germany. The rise in the index was marked at the end of the sixth month in a row. Experts interviewed by Bloomberg agency, on average, predicted an increase of 13.5 thousand. Respondents to Trading Economics expected an increase of 13 thousand.
Additional positives for investors in European markets on Wednesday were messages about easing of coronavirus restrictions in a lot of cities in China. Note that Amazon’s stock price is also rising if you are interested in the U.S. stock market.
Earlier, we reported that U.S. stock indices were up 2.2-4.4%.
U.S. stock indices today rose 2.2-4.4%
The U.S. stock indices today closed the trading on Wednesday with the confident growth due to the statements of the Federal Reserve Chairman, Jerome Powell, who confirmed that the U.S. Central Bank could slow down the basic rate rise as early as in December.
Judging by the quotations of futures on the level of the prime rate, U.S. stock market indices expect the Federal Reserve to raise it by 50 basis points (bps) in December – to 4.25-4.5%. The U.S. Central Bank has increased the rate by 75 bps at each of the previous four meetings. Against this background, the current stock price of Facebook also rose.
The report by the industry organization ADP, published on Wednesday, showed a slowdown in job growth in the U.S. private sector. Their number increased by 127,000 in November, the lowest rate since January, said the ADP. Analysts polled by The Wall Street Journal on average had forecast job growth of 190,000 after a jump of 239,000 in October.
Data from the U.S. Commerce Department, also released Nov. 30, showed higher-than-reported growth in the U.S. economy in the third quarter. U.S. GDP grew at an annualized rate of 2.9% in the July-September quarter, rather than the previously reported 2.6%. Experts polled by Trading Economics had expected an average revision of 2.7%.
Also, the Federal Reserve released its regional Beige Book survey Wednesday, showing that economic activity in the United States was little changed in the fall.
Federal Reserve banks in five counties reported a weak increase in activity in October and November, while the other seven reported a stable or slightly declining economy.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average index was up 737.24 points (2.18%) at 34589.77 as of Wednesday’s market close.
Standard & Poor’s 500 rose 122.48 points (3.09%) to 4,080.11 points.
The Nasdaq Composite added 484.22 points (4.41%) to 1,468.
All three U.S. stock market indices closed November, with the Dow Jones gaining 5.3%; the S&P 500 gaining 4.6%, and the Nasdaq Composite gaining 3.3%.
Earlier we reported that Main European stock indices were rising during trading.
Main European stock indices rise in trading
Main European stock indices are rising during trading on Thursday. The Stoxx Europe 600 composite index of the largest companies in the region rose 0.58% to 442.60 points. German DAX is up 0.34%, British FTSE 100 is up 0.15%, French CAC 40 is up 0.01%, Italian FTSE MIB is up 0.47% and Spanish IBEX 35 is up 0.45%.
What affected the best European stock indices?
During a speech at the Brookings Institution on Wednesday, Powell reiterated that the Fed could slow the rise in the prime rate as early as December. “The time to moderate the pace of rate hikes may come as early as the next meeting,” Powell said.
The Fed chair, meanwhile, tried to balance those words with “hawkish” signals. Market Watch notes. He said that the U.S. Central Bank will have to raise the rate higher than could be expected a few months ago. Moreover, Powell made it clear that the issue of rate cuts is irrelevant at the moment. By the way, his words influenced the growth of the current stock price of the NASDAQ-100.
Another Fed official, Board of Governors member Lisa Cook said she believes the regulator needs to keep raising rates as inflation is still too high. “We’ve started to get more favorable inflation data. But I would be cautious about drawing big conclusions on just one month’s worth of data,” Cook said during a speech at the Detroit Economic Club.
Earlier, we reported on how European stock indexes were falling following Asian stock markets.
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