That rally put the retailer in solidly positive territory for the year, up over 35% by early December.
Target benefited from rising investor enthusiasm about the end of the COVID-19 threat thanks to positive vaccine development news last month. But the bigger factor behind its stock surge last month was a strong earnings report.
CEO Brian Cornell and his team revealed a 21% sales spike for the fiscal third quarter that runs through late October. That boost combined with improving profitability to send net income over $1 billion, up 42% year over year.
Target is preparing for record digital sales volumes this holiday season that might stress its multi-channel selling platform. Executives plan to make heavy use of stores as fulfillment centers, though, so they are optimistic about handling the surge. That said, the retailer said in a conference call with investors that there's a wide range of demand trends that could develop over the next few weeks, and Target is prioritizing flexibility as it seeks to end its record 2020 year on a positive note.