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Pfizer’s CEO sold $5.6 million in stock the day he announced promising vaccine news

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla filed to sell millions of dollars of his company's stock Monday -- the day the pharmaceutical giant announced positive data about its coronavirus vaccine.

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The company’s shares soared after Pfizer and European drug company BioNTech said early data suggests the vaccine could be more than 90% effective.

Update: EU to buy up to 300m doses of BioNTech-Pfizer’s Covid-19 vaccine

The transaction was part of a regularly scheduled plan set up by Bourla to periodically sell some of his Pfizer shares. Bourla sold 132,508 Pfizer (PFE) shares at a price of $41.94, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. That works out to proceeds of nearly $5.6 million. A Pfizer spokeswoman said in an email to CNN Business that the sale took place because Pfizer shares hit a predetermined price as part of a plan authorized by Bourla on August 19.

Pfizer says early analysis shows its Covid-19 vaccine is more than 90% effective

When asked if Pfizer and Bourla thought to cancel the stock sale due to the perception that Bourla might be cashing in on good news, the spokeswoman said that “these are predetermined plans managed through a third-party stock administrator.”

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