The 2020 trading year was characterized by historically unusual high volatility. Following the outbreak of the COVID 19 pandemic, numerous stock indices around the world fell, often to multi-year lows, but turned around and recovered as the year progressed. At the end of 2020, many were even trading close to their multi-year or even all-time highs. The DAX index closed the year with a year-on-year gain of just under 4 %, the TecDAX rose by almost 7 %, and the MDAX increased by just below 9 %. The NASDAQ Biotechnology Index closed the year almost 26 % higher than at the beginning of the year as companies in the biotechnology sector were able to decouple themselves from the general stock market trend – as the importance of the biotechnology industry was reinforced by the pandemic.
MorphoSys AG shares have been trading on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange since 1999. In 2018, MorphoSys issued American Depositary Shares (ADSs*) on the U.S. NASDAQ exchange based on MorphoSys’ common stock. The Company’s ticker symbol is “MOR” on both exchanges.
MorphoSys’ shares opened the 2020 trading year in Xetra trading at € 129.60. The share performance was highly volatile, particularly in the first quarter of 2020. Following the announcement of the collaboration and licensing agreement with Incyte, the share price on Xetra increased temporarily and almost reached the all-time high of € 148.13 recorded in 2000. In the wake of the COVID 19 pandemic, the share price saw intraday declines as low as € 65.25, but was able to recover. MorphoSys’ shares started to stabilize in May, climbing to above € 100.00 and ended the trading year on Xetra at € 93.82.
Liquidity and Index Membership
The average daily trading volume of the MorphoSys share across all regulated trading platforms increased significantly to € 33.5 million in 2020 (previous year: € 25.6 million), corresponding to a year-on-year increase of more than 30 %. For the TecDAX and MDAX selection indices, trading volumes were up year-on-year by 28 % and 47 %, respectively. In the TecDAX, MorphoSys ranked 11th in terms of trading volume at year-end 2020 (unchanged from the previous year) and 13th in terms of market capitalization (previous year: 9th). In the MDAX, MorphoSys ranked 64th in terms of market capitalization (previous year: 55th) and 54th in terms of trading volume (2019: 57th). The rankings refer to the TecDAX30 and MDAX60 companies, respectively. MorphoSys is also a component of the NASDAQ Composite Index through its ADS program and is included in various other indices, such as the NASDAQ Health Care Index, the Loncar Cancer Immunotherapy Index and the S-Network Medical Breakthrough Index.
In addition to the trading on the regulated platforms, an average of approximately 217,000 of MorphoSys‘ shares with a value of approximately € 22.4 million were traded daily on alternative trading venues (“dark pools”) in 2020 (2019: 196,000 shares; € 19.1 million). This figure corresponds to a year-on-year increase in trading outside of the regulated markets of approximately 18 %. The MorphoSys ADSs reached a volume of US$ 3 million per trading day in the reporting year (previous year: US$ 1.7 million), for an increase of approximately 73 %.