The Only Travel Stock Worth Buying Right Now

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Over the past six months, shares of Airbnb (Nasdaq: ABNB) have dropped nearly 30%.

And no wonder…

The reopening and travel trade has been completely hijacked by the emergence of the COVID-19 delta variant – which has introduced a new level of fear and apprehension.

And in the process, this renewed level of uncertainty has capped the ability of most travel stocks to extend their gains.

However, this situation introduces a very important point about investing.

You see, the delta variant news that you’re hearing applies to right now.

But on Wall Street, traders and investors alike don’t value stocks based on what’s happening right now. Rather, they value stocks based on what’ll be happening six months from now.

So if you look at the recent earnings report from Airbnb and then extrapolate that report to project what’ll be happening in February and March of 2022, you’ll see the opportunity that’s in front of you right now.

Here’s the recap…

Back on August 13, Airbnb reported an adjusted loss of $0.11 per share, which was far better than the expectation of a loss of $0.36 per share. It also reported that revenues jumped 300% – thanks (in part) to a 197% increase in bookings.

By all counts, this was a fantastic report. However, Airbnb had to admit (almost out of necessity) that the effects from the COVID-19 delta variant remain uncertain going forward.

As a result of this one acknowledgement, shares of Airbnb dropped in reaction to this news.

In my view, this reaction is shortsighted, and here’s why…

 

If you take a deeper look inside Airbnb’s report, you’ll see that the “funds receivable” account (the amount Airbnb holds on behalf of customers who have made a reservation for the future but have not yet taken their trip) increased from $4.4 billion in the second quarter of 2019 to $6.3 billion here in the second quarter of 2021. To me, this 43% increase indicates that people are ready to travel right now, despite the delta variant – which really makes a strong case for what’ll be happening six months from now.

Action Plan: Yes, the emergence of the delta variant is a concern for a travel play like Airbnb right now. But if you take a six-month view and you think things could be improving by the second quarter of 2022, then buying Airbnb shares now, especially given its recent earnings release, sounds like a risk-reward scenario that’s worth taking. In my view, Airbnb is a $200 stock (given the way that it’s disrupted the entire travel sector), so buying at these levels looks like an absolute steal.

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