CNBC’s Jim Cramer consoled himself Friday with a prediction from Dr. Scott Gottlieb that Covid’s pandemic phase could be over by January.
“Dr. Gottlieb basically said the war was over and that’s just amazing,” said Cramer. Gottlieb, who served as FDA chief under former President Donald Trump, is currently a member of the Pfizer board of directors.
“This pandemic could well be over by January 4th, at least as far as the United States is concerned, after we have survived this wave of Delta infections,” said Gottlieb in the “Squawk Box”. “We will be in a more endemic phase after that.”
Gottlieb referred to January 4 because it is the new deadline for the Biden government’s mandate for larger U.S. companies to ensure their employees are fully vaccinated or regularly tested for Covid.
“The end of the war is in sight,” said Cramer.
Gottlieb’s comments on CNBC early Friday morning were more important than the strong October employment figures, said the Mad Money host.
“You were talking about employment, I don’t care about the employment numbers – the pandemic is over,” said Cramer. “It sounds like it’s over.”
“Today is a good day,” said Cramer, referring to Pfizer’s announcement that internal data showed that its oral Covid pill – when given with a widely used HIV drug – provided an 89 percent reduction in cancer At risk of hospitalization or adult death with the coronavirus. Pfizer stock was up more than 8% on Friday morning.
“The only people who are unhappy are the people who own the stocks that forced you to stay in,” Cramer said. So-called reopening economic stocks rose Friday morning as names at home came under pressure.
Merck’s antiviral Covid pill, developed with Ridgeback Biotherapeutics, reduced the risk of hospitalization and death from Covid by 50%, according to internal data released early last month. Merck shares fell nearly 9% on Friday as the company faced competition in treatments.
Unlike Pfizer, Merck does not have a Covid vaccine.
Disclosure: Scott Gottlieb is a CNBC employee and a member of the board of directors of Pfizer, genetic testing startup Tempus, health technology company Aetion, and biotechnology company Illumina. He is also co-chair of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings ′ and Royal Caribbean’s Healthy Sail Panel.