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Why Uber Stock Jumped 20% Last Month

By Keith Noonan – Jun 8, 2020 at 2:55PM

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Investors brushed off the company's huge first-quarter loss, and the stock is now up roughly 23% year to date.

What happened

Shares of Uber (UBER 0.30%) gained 20% in May, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence. The stock's gains stemmed from better-than-expected first-quarter sales, momentum for the broader market, and indications that the ride-sharing market was rebounding from challenges created by the novel coronavirus.

^SPX Chart

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Image source: YCharts.

Uber published first-quarter results on May 7, posting revenue and bookings that topped the market's targets and earnings that missed expectations. The company's bookings for the period came in at $15.78 billion compared to the average analyst's call for bookings of $15.27 billion. Revenue for the period was $3.54 billion, compared to the average target for sales of $3.37 billion. The company's loss per share came in at a hefty $1.70, which was well ahead of the average target's estimation for a per-share loss of $0.90.

A person using their mobile phone in a car.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

Uber stock climbed following its first-quarter report despite losses that came in much worse than the market anticipated. Signs of recovery in the ride-hailing market and better-than-expected sales and bookings were enough to lift the company's share price, and the company's valuation continued to gain ground amid momentum for the broader market. Rides bookings in the first quarter declined 3% year over year, while Uber Eats bookings rose 54% year over year.

Uber stock also appears to have gotten a late-month boost from a press release unveiling the launch of an hourly based ride-hailing option in select cities. The announcement was published on May 29 and detailed the service's new hourly rate service option, with a base rate starting at $50 per hour and variable mileage overage charges depending on the city of operation. 

Now what

Uber's stock has climbed roughly 1% in June's trading amid big gains for the broader market.

^SPX Chart

^SPX data by YCharts

Image source: YCharts.

At the time of the company's first-quarter conference call, management noted that rides on the company's platform had posted week-over-week growth for three consecutive weeks. The company now expects to be profitable on a quarterly adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) basis in 2021.

Uber is valued at roughly 4.8 times this year's expected sales.

Keith Noonan has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Uber Technologies. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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