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Peloton and Zoom Show More Pain for Covid Trade

Peloton Interactive Inc. and Zoom Video Communications Inc., perhaps the two stocks most associated with Covid-era gains, now are trading below where they were before the pandemic upended life around the globe.

Both the fitness subscription company and the video-conferencing software firm have slumped throughout 2022, building on losses from 2021 that came as the so-called stay-at-home trade began to unwind. Disappointing quarterly results from both last week underscored the difficulty they’re having in holding on to the robust demand they saw as millions worked — and worked out — from home. Shares of Peloton are up 1% on Monday, while Zoom is up 0.7%. Zoom has plunged 86% from its October 2020 peak and is one of the 10 biggest percentage decliners in the Nasdaq 100 Index this year. Peloton has collapsed more than 90% from its record January 2021 record, touching an all-time closing low last month. Bears say there’s no sign that the stocks will recover any time soon, given that analysts are still hacking away at their revenue estimates.

“Both went crazy during the stay-at-home era because demand went off the charts, and the combination of hype and day traders bidding them up turned them into a bubble,” said Jordan Kahn, chief investment officer of ACM Funds. The two are hardly the only Covid stocks that have seen sharp reversals from their pandemic-era heydays. Netflix Inc. and DocuSign Inc. are the two biggest Nasdaq 100 losers of the year, declining in the wake of disappointing results. In addition to the demand headwinds such companies have seen as customers return to offices and gyms, they are also facing an economic backdrop that has turned against stocks with their financial profiles. Aggressive moves by the Federal Reserve to combat inflation have led investors to seek out companies with consistent growth or which pay dividends, and away from companies that aren’t profitable or where fast growth rates are cooling off. Last week, Fed Chair Jerome Powell indicated the US central bank was likely to keep raising interest rates.

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