The world was waiting for very positive news on the COVID-19 vaccine. There already had been some good news in prior weeks, but an announcement was made early on Monday by the Pfizer/BioNTech team that the efficacy from their most recent late-stage study was more than 90% positive. The impact of this news was seen across almost the entire global financial markets, but the sector travel and leisure was leading the pack.
All the results were based on Pfizer’s first interim efficacy analysis by an independent data monitoring committee for the Phase 3 clinical study. This does imply that the final analysis could be far less positive. It also leaves room for the potentiality of safety or side-effect issues. Still, 90% or better for a vaccine that is in desperate need has at least the stock market thinking that a vaccine is now coming.
The reason that the travel and leisure sectors benefit so much should be rather obvious. People have largely stopped traveling for business. They travel for leisure now in different manners and closer to home. Most families also are still not eating out at indoor restaurants. Large gatherings from movies to sports to concerts have all been stopped, for the most part.
24/7 Wall St. took a look at some of the largest gainers in the airlines, hotels, cruises, movies, restaurants and so on that are set to benefit. Even if the results were perfect, it’s going to take time to get the vaccine out to the public. This is also a time when coronavirus cases have moved above 100,000 per day in the United States, which also has crossed the 10 million total case threshold.
Cruise Ships Sailing
Carnival Corp. (NYSE: CCL) was the largest cruise operations company ahead of the pandemic, and its shares were gutted during the pandemic. Carnival was last seen up over 35% at $18.71, and its 52-week range is $7.80 to $51.94. Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE: RCL) was up 24% to $72.85, in a 52-week range of $19.25 to $135.32.
Marriott International Inc. (NYSE: MAR) is a global leader, with a $38 billion market cap, in hotel chains. The stock was last seen up almost 13% at $117.25 a share, and it has a 52-week range of $46.56 to $153.39. Hyatt Hotels Corp. (NYSE: H) is another industry leader. It was up more 14% at $65.00 and has a 52-week range of $24.02 to $94.98.
American Airlines Group Inc. (NASDAQ: AAL) is considered to be the most in-need airline by investors, and it was last seen up 16.45% at $13.36, and its stock traded above $50 in 2018. American’s 52-week range is $8.25 to $30.78. United Airlines Holdings Inc. (NYSE: UAL) was up over 17% at $40.78, and it has a 52-week range of $17.80 to $93.88. Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) is deemed to be the healthiest of the carriers, and it has the least global exposure of the major carriers, with operations in Mexico and the Caribbean. Southwest was up almost 12% at $44.75.
Movies You Want to See
AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. (NYSE: AMC) already has warned it might not have enough cash to last much longer, but its stock was up a whopping 59% at $3.97. AMC has a 52-week range of $1.95 to $9.67. Cinemark Holdings Inc. (NYSE: CNK) was up 51% at $13.62, and it still has a $1.6 billion market cap. Cinemark’s 52-week trading range is $5.71 to $36.56.
Brinker International Inc. (NYSE: EAT) is among the top restaurant chains, with Chili’s and its other brands. The stock was last seen up 14% at $51.90, in a 52-week range of $7.00 to $52.26. Darden Restaurants Inc. (NYSE: DRI) is much larger, with a $15 billion market cap, and it was up 14% at $116.50 on Monday. Darden has a 52-week range of $26.15 to $125.96. Cheesecake Factory Inc. (NASDAQ: CAKE) surged more than 22% to $38.00, and it has a 52-week range of $14.52 to $44.66.
Six Flags Entertainment Corp. (NYSE: SIX) is a pure-play in theme parks operations, but its market cap was last seen at $2.5 billion. The stock was 17% higher to $29.25, in a 52-week range of $8.75 to $46.86. Cedar Fair L.P. (NYSE: FUN) was up 21% at $35.30 on Monday, in a 52-week range of $13.00 to $57.50. SeaWorld Entertainment Inc. (NYSE: SEAS) traded up 17% to $27.87.
Casinos and Theme Hotels
Casinos have lost a lot, and their travel destinations that have reopened have no corporate events to get much income from. Wynn Resorts Ltd. (NASDAQ: WYNN) was up 27.5% at $102.03, and it has a 52-week range of $35.84 to $153.41. Las Vegas Sands Corp. (NYSE: LVS) traded up 13% at $59.83, and it has a massive $45 billion market cap. Las Vegas Sands has a 52-week trading range of $33.30 to $74.29.
With all the venues and travel weak, it has been a dismal time for travel planning services as well in 2020. Booking Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: BKNG) was last seen up 15% at $2,050.50, with an $84 billion market cap. Expedia Group Inc. (NASDAQ: EXPE) traded up 22% at $126.10 and has a market cap of close to $18 billion.
Two Dow Stock Winners Too!
Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) is of course the leader in entertainment of all: theme parks, movies, sports and even hotels and cruise ships. Disney shares were up 11.2% at $141.75 on Monday in midday trading, in a 52-week range of $79.07 to $153.41. Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA) may be in defense and aerospace, but it is the king plane-maker. Boeing was up 14% at $179.80, in a 52-week range of $89.00 to $375.60.
While all these gains are massive, investors need to consider that their results are going to remain strained for some time and that many of them are magically back closer to their highs from pre-coronavirus damage.