Dividend.com analyzes the search patterns of our visitors each week. By sharing these trends with our readers, we hope to provide insights into what the financial world is concerned about and how to position your portfolio.
Pharmaceutical giant Pfizer has taken the first spot in the list this week after it unveiled a coronavirus vaccine. Walt Disney is second as the company reported strong subscriber growth for its Disney+ streaming service. Oil pipeline provider Enbridge is third as the firm finally reached its goal of starting construction for a huge crude pipeline, although it was also dealt a blow in Michigan. The list is closed by 3M, the staples conglomerate that does everything from scotch tapes to Post-It notes.
Don’t forget to read our previous edition of trends here.
Pfizer (PFE) has seen its viewership advance 76% over the past two weeks, for obvious reasons. Together with BioNTech, the pharmaceutical giant developed the world’s first vaccine that was 90% effective, triggering a rally in its stock price as well as other stocks hit by the coronavirus pandemic, ranging from real estate to airlines.
The Pfizer rally has not lasted long, however, partly because Moderna shortly unveiled an apparently better vaccine, which is 95% effective, lasts longer, and can be kept at a higher temperature. Given that the Pfizer vaccine needs to be stored at a much lower temperature, it could run into transportation problems, potentially increasing its price dramatically. Moderna’s vaccine is said to remain stable at 2 to 8 degrees Celsius for 30 days, making it a better candidate for mass use.
Pfizer has already initiated a trial program for the coronavirus vaccine in several states, including Rhode Island, Texas, and New Mexico. The company hopes the delivery model it will develop in these four states will serve as a role model for countries around the world.
Shares in Pfizer are down 5% over the past 30 days, bringing year-to-date losses to 8%. Pfizer pays an annual dividend of $1.50 per year, amounting to a yield of 3.9%.
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Media and entertainment conglomerate Disney (DIS) has seen its traffic surge 45% over the past two weeks, as the company reported impressive subscriber growth for its Disney+ streaming service. Disney+, which was launched just a year ago, hit 73.7 million subscribers in the latest quarter, crushing analysts’ expectations of 65.5 million.
At launch, Disney said it targeted between 60 million and 90 million subscribers by 2024. Disney+ was the only bright spot for the company as its media networks, movie studios, and theme parks continued to suffer from the COVID-19 pandemic. Overall revenues have declined 23% to $14.7 billion, versus analyst expectations of a 26% drop.
Revenues in direct to consumer, or streaming, was up 41% to $4.85 billion, while parks saw sales fall 61% to $2.5 billion and studio revenue declined 52% to $1.59 billion. The company reported a loss of $0.39 per share compared with a gain of $0.43 in the prior quarter.
Disney recently announced a reorganization of its operations around its streaming service, shortly after activist investor Third Point Partners called for the cancellation of the dividend and the aggressive investment of the available funds in content for Disney+. In other words, the activist believes Disney+ should follow Netflix’s model.
Disney temporarily halted its dividend but indicated it will reinstate it in the future.
Canadian pipeline provider Enbridge (ENB) is third in the list with a rise in traffic of 38% as the company received mixed news recently. After it received permits in Minnesota for its Line 3 pipeline, it edged closer to starting the replacement project. However, Enbridge was dealt a blow in Michigan, where Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer ordered a shutdown of the Line 5 pipeline, citing a violation of terms and conditions.
The company will be forced to close the pipeline within 180 days. Until then, both sides will fight in court. Analysts believe Enbridge will prevail and Line 5 will continue to operate.
Shares in Enbridge have lost more than 22% since the start of the year. Enbridge pays an annualized dividend of $2.48 per share, representing a yield of 8.7%.
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3M (MMM), the industrial company that manufactures a host of staples, closes the list with a 27% rise in viewership.
Shares in 3M have advanced more than 2.5% over the past five days as the company posted encouraging results for October. Sales for the last month were $2.9 billion, an increase of 3% over the same period last year. As expected, the healthcare segment saw the highest increase of 12%, followed by consumer with 7% growth, and safety and industrial with 4%. The transportation and electronics segment was the only one that saw its sales decline by around 4%.
More than a week ago, 3M declared a quarterly dividend of $1.47 per share, resulting in a forward yield of 3.5%.
The Bottom Line
Pfizer was the first pharmaceutical company to unveil an effective coronavirus vaccine, triggering a broad stock market rally in stocks hit by the COVID-19 pandemic. Disney rallied after the firm posted strong subscriber growth for its Disney+ streaming service. Enbridge was dealt another blow in Michigan after the state’s governor ordered a shutdown of a pipeline. 3M posted strong results for October.
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