The company’s shares soared after Pfizer and European drug company BioNTech said early data suggests the vaccine could be more than 90% effective.
The transaction was part of a regularly scheduled plan set up by Bourla to periodically sell some of his Pfizer shares.
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.
Many executives sell stock at predetermined intervals to diversify their portfolios. But they can delay the sales to avoid appearances of capitalizing on one-off events that can boost company’s shares.
Bouria told CNN’s Sanjay Gupta that he learned of the trial’s results Sunday, a day before they were made public.
Critics accused Moderna of overhyping the vaccine trial results, but the company nonetheless raised $1.3 billion in a stock sale immediately following the vaccine trial announcement.
Executives then sold tens of millions of dollars worth of Moderna shares before the company’s stock price fizzled a week later.
Some former SEC officials called on Moderna to be investigated for potential illegal market manipulation.