MRNA - CEO Stephane Bancel deleted his Twitter, divested ~$64.5M of stock in Q4

Putting this out there. Moderna’s CEO recently deleted his Twitter account and has been selling a large amount of stock.

Deletion of Twitter:

Divestment has been over the past several years, but in late May / early June of 2021 it looks to have ramped up significantly to the tune of over $100M as of today, with approximately $64.5M of that in Q4 alone. (Stephane Bancel | insider screener)

In trying to fact check, I came across a fairly lengthy Reddit thread on this, but in /r/conspiracy, not in a trading subreddit. Take with a large grain of salt: Reddit - Dive into anything

Important note: the Reddit thread references accusations of fraud in the vaccine clinical trials by Edward Dowd. In cross-checking Edward Dowd, he came up in some very tinfoil hat GME-related discussions, and apparently has said some very out-there stuff. I could not find a credible source for anything having to do with fraud or an investigation.

In fact, after reading the Reddit thread and in particular more about Dowd and the unsubstantiated accusations, I was reluctant to post this topic at all. Maybe Bancel is dealing with some personal issues and the divestment is completely normal. However - the CEO of a company like MRNA suddenly deleting his Twitter account shortly after significant recent divestment of his holdings has me wondering if there’s more that we aren’t seeing or hearing.

Interested in discussing and hearing others’ thoughts, as MRNA’s Q4 ER is scheduled for 2/24.


Just adding some additional inside trading…interesting. Especially with ER coming up in this current market climate and their international reach


I did just have a gummy, but this is fascinating.

This is intriguing LOL.

Here’s a cleaner site for the stock option exercising and sales: MRNA - Moderna, Inc. - SEC Form 4 Insider Trading Screener - OpenInsider

Nothing really stands out to me in the put/call ratios.

Nothing particularly unusual in the options flows, at least recently.

Aside from weird transaction and flow activity, I do think it’s likely gonna be a bearish earnings with weak guidance. Pfizer is the market leader in vaccines, and they do not really expect to top guidance on vaccine sales much. Where Pfizer stands out is their Paxlovid pill, as well as their ever-expanding pipeline. Moderna is a company running on a single product: their COVID vaccine. And that revenue source is ever-dwindling. Pfizer vaccine is more popular than Moderna’s so Moderna’s guidance should be worse than Pfizer’s.

Could be a good puts play leading towards earnings?

Setting this to watching.


Good write up. I’ll add these points regarding the CEO’s stock liquidation and MRNA’s price action:

MRNA was trading in the $60s pre-COVID. It mooned soon after they announced their vax candidate. It traded near $500 at the peak.

Last earnings report on 11/4/21 the stock took a major hit. It dropped from $345 to $284. It nose-dived again the following day down to $236. Over the following few weeks the stock climbed back up to close at $368 on 11/29 closing the gap created post earnings. However, it resumed descending and closed at $161.32 yesterday, 2/11/22. That’s still $100 above pre-COVID - not too shabby.

There had been speculation that MRNA was going to announce a new drug candidate on the 11/4 earnings call. I believe it may have been flu vaccine via mRNA (?). That didn’t happen so analysts decided the growth story was fading.

For reference, here’s the link to their reported current pipeline: mRNA medicines we are currently developing

The CEO is legally selling as much as possible at the highest price available during the available trading windows. If the pipeline is weak and their growth story continues to fade then the stock most likely trades down. He’s cashing out while valuation is elevated.

Regarding him deleting his Twitter account, he may have been advised by his legal / compliance team to do so. It could have been that there’s really no point for him to post and potentially create a liability to the company (ie Elon Musk, TSLA).


Some more info

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they seem to downplay the twitter deletion thing, and stock selloff as planned event. Idk who’s right but big doubts on either direction.

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Don’t insider sells have to be scheduled?

I think you’re referring to stock based compensation which is scheduled. But after that I think they’re free to sell but it’d get reported with a 13G filing (?)

Thanks! My company’s CEO schedules his sells to avoid any appearance of insider trading (or whatever the right term is). Probably where my confusion comes from.

Seems like the CEO selling is consistent/expected. I haven’t looked into the modifications he made to his 10b5-1, but he holds fewer shares now than ever before (~21.8M).