Live Nation had a terrible quarter, but its stock soared on "slingshot" potential

Tuesday, May 11, 2021 by Robinhood Snacks |
_Dreaming of The Weeknd 2022 [Flashpop/DigitalVision via Getty Images]_

Dreaming of The Weeknd 2022 [Flashpop/DigitalVision via Getty Images]

Screw it, we'll do it... on Zoom. In 2020, concert giant Live Nation saw its sales plunge 84% from 2019, because the nation was 0% live. Last quarter, Live Nation's sales were down 79% ("live factor" = still low). It's a sad tale... but Live Nation isn't crying to The Weeknd in bed.

Save your tears for another day... Live Nation stock jumped 4% yesterday after a Jefferies analyst called it a pure-play reopening stock. Despite the massive sales plunge and big losses, Live Nation shares are trading higher now than they ever were pre-pandemic. Ariana Grande fans are having withdrawal, and Wall Street is upbeat about Live Nation's reopening potential, for two reasons:

  • Bad Bunny (2022): Live Nation is seeing the effects of "significant" pent-up demand for concerts, saying bookings are seriously booming. It has already booked twice as many shows for 2022 as it did in 2019.
  • Live (From Home): Last year, Live Nation invested heavily in streaming. It took a majority stake in livestreaming platform Veeps, outfitted 60 of its 289 concert venues with livestream tech, and announced a virtual concert series that launches this month.

Live Nation could be a "slingshot stock"... We're calling it slingshot potential. "Recovery stocks" are companies that could rebound to pre-pandemic levels. "Slingshot stocks" go a step further — they could surpass pre-pandemic levels. Live Nation says its concerts are returning stronger than they were in 2019. Plus, it now has a new source of sales to pad its balance sheet: live streaming. Another potential slingshot stock is Carnival, which says it already has more cruise bookings for 2022 than it did in 2019.