The COVID-19 pandemic had a mixed impact on the global economy, with some sectors managing to navigate the health crisis with increased revenue, while others were heavily hit by all the restrictions imposed to prevent the spread of the virus. Several business sectors stand out meaningfully at the end of 2020 and should be considered, given they have good prospects heading into this year 2021.
Even though at some point the pandemic will be under control, epidemiologists believe it will become endemic, which means the need for vaccines and therapeutics will be in high demand for years to come. Online stock trading on healthcare companies surged since the virus started spreading and investors continue to pile on, now that several vaccines have been announced with high efficiency.
Pfizer had already managed to receive approval in the UK and the same can happen in the US and the EU. AstraZeneca and Moderna are the other two major healthcare companies with efficient vaccines. Eli Lilly and Regeneron are among the companies working to develop antibody cocktails, considering getting approval for therapeutics will be easier, as compared to vaccines. Better revenue prospects continue to favor the healthcare industry, given poor performance in sectors such as transportation, tourism, or industry.
The tech sector proved high flexibility during the pandemic and managed to keep operations running, even during the lockdowns. Combining work-from-home with the closure of physical offices has proven to be a winning formula, as most of the publicly-listed companies managed to exceed the market’s expectations in terms of revenue and earnings.
Whether or not in 2021 there will be a spillover effect and the poor performance seen in various sectors will have an influence on tech is still yet to be seen. Even if that will be the case, free cash flow is encouraging for most of the big tech names such as Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, Facebook, or Google.
Shopping habits had been severely altered by the pandemic and people moved to the online world. There was already an established bullish trend for e-commerce, with the 2020 situation only speeding it up. E-commerce performed above expectations, especially in the USA, where the government offered funds for all citizens during the lockdown, keeping their revenue steady, even though unemployment surpasses the 2009 peak in May.
#4 Communication Services
Regardless of the pandemic, people are social in nature and need to communicate, especially at a time when the world is rattled by a health crisis. As a result, the communication services sector had been another beneficiary this year, considering the time spent on social media and video streaming platforms had increased.
Business meetings are held on Zoom, and Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and other platforms have seen users allocate more of their daily time online. Given there will be social distancing measures in place even now that vaccines will start to be distributed, it is very likely that this sector will continue to benefit well into 2021.
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