Monday, April 27, 2009

Do Not Buy Swine Flu-Related Stocks

Published at The No Buy List:

As the world is freaking out about a possible swine flu pandemic, travel related stocks are being sold off. The damage that swine flu will inflict on airlines and cruise companies is likely (much) more psychological than tangible, but I would still avoid buying any travel-related stocks until this swine flu hype (hopefully) blows over.

For example, Carnival Cruise Lines (CCL) shares are down 10% as of 10 AM Monday, and its main competitor, Royal Carribean (RCL) is down 15%. Airlines are taking a beating too - Southwest (LUV) is down about 9%, while US Air (LCC), which was also downgraded by UBS this morning, is trading down 15%. Here is a little article on MarketWatch showing the price declines of airline stocks.

Actual bookings for things like cruises and flights may decline if this fear doesn't pass over quickly. But the market will continue to sell these stocks as long as the swine flu scare is making news. Eventually, there will be a buying opportunity after the fear subsides, but I would not be buying any of these stocks today.

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