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Why Shares of Wayfair Jumped Again Today

By John Rosevear - Mar 23, 2020 at 3:46PM

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Unlike its brick-and-mortar rivals, Wayfair is still open for business.

What happened

Shares of online home-goods retailer Wayfair (W 6.25%) surged on Monday, as investors snapped up shares of battered consumer-durables companies that aren't dependent on brick-and-mortar stores. 

As of 3 p.m. EDT, Wayfair's shares were up about 11% from Friday's closing price.

So what

Until recently, Wayfair was a fast-growing, high-flying (and money-losing) mostly online seller of furniture and home goods. Its once-white-hot stock started cooling dramatically in February as the coronavirus pandemic appeared on more investors' radar. It fell a long way -- and now, investors are moving back in.

A living room mockup filled with Wayfair furniture and home goods.

Image source: Wayfair.

How hot is Wayfair with growth-minded investors? Let's put it this way: In a note on Monday morning, Wells Fargo analyst Zachery Fadem cut his price target for Wayfair from $60 to $38 -- and the stock still jumped over 10% this afternoon.  

It's still way too early to think of this as a recovery, though. As you can see, even with nice gains in the last two sessions, the stock is still way down from the beginning of February.

W Chart

W data by YCharts.

Now what

Wayfair has one retail store (in Massachusetts), but it's mostly an online business. The good news is that it won't have to worry (much) about costs and lost revenue from shuttered brick-and-mortar stores; the not-so-good news is that a deep recession, which seems increasingly likely, will hurt online businesses as well. 

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