The travel sector fell victim to heavy losses over the course of the two-year pandemic; international restrictions and all-out travel bans left the lucrative sector completely exposed. Airbnb (NASDAQ: ABNB) had a mixed 2021, with an initial downfall outweighed by a resurgence in domestic travel – especially at a time when hotels were mostly out of the equation. Since the end of January this year, as variant fears slowly subside and travel anticipation returns, ABNB stock has seen a sharp rebound.
A critical factor here, and why Airbnb is such an interesting travel stock, is an all-out shift in the travel ecosystem. The company reported Q4 earnings after the closing bell on Tuesday, with management looking to remote working as a critical benefactor to a change in how people interact with the travel sector.
ABNB stock reached highs of around 4.5% before retracing slightly with the Wednesday market open. The company reported adjusted earnings of $0.08 per share with revenue of $1.53B, beating analyst expectations of $0.04 per share and revenue of $1.45B. Revenue jumped 38% year-on-year, and Airbnb projected Q1 revenue of $1.41B to $1.48B, again beating predictions of $1.24B.
Management made specific comments regarding a global shift in travel patterns, citing the movement as “the biggest change to travel since the advent of commercial flying”. Due to the boom in remote working, people are traveling across towns and cities much more freely, extending stays for much longer than normal.
The company commented:
“Nearly half of our nights booked in Q4 were for stays of a week or longer. One in five nights booked were for stays of a month or longer,” the company went on to say.
Airbnb’s earnings are indicative of changing travel trends; domestically and abroad. As remote work continues to play more of a part in modern mobility; Airbnb will likely continue to benefit from the enhanced freedom of movement driven by an integration of a legitimate work/travel lifestyle model.
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Oliver is a financial writer and analyst specialising in the US stock market, with years of personal experience in understanding micro/macroeconomic structures, market trends and fundamental analysis.