FedEx ($FDX) is having a tough year, with shares trading flat over the course of what's been a good 2019 for other companies in the logistics space. Part of FedEx's stress could be tracked back to the fact that it lost Amazon ($AMZN) as a shipping partner - sure to have an impact on its operations this time of year.
But if that's to be believed - then the chart above should come as a surprise to a lot of market watchers. It tracks a 2019 rise in second-half job postings leading up to the holiday shipping season, that is noticeably larger (at a 41% second-half increase to peak-job-postings prior to the Thanksgiving holiday) than that of 2018.
There are other factors - a December 12 research note from Wells Fargo Securities analysts notes "skepticism continues to reign," as "international trade issues" continue to cast a shadow over the market. Still, analysts note in their report, they're optimistic in the future that FedEx will be able to "better leverage its recent investments" in areas like IT and shipping.
If FedEx is hiring more staffers, and focusing on improving operations and technology, than its map (seen above) will hopefully be a little more active in 2019. We're also able to track Facebook ($FB) data, which reflects an increase in likes for FedEx (not shown), which may reflect well on its customer service through its technological improvements. After all - the analysts state, in their note - package volume is still expected to double by 2026.
Wells Fargo analysts say they're expecting a slight miss at $2.83 EPS for FedEx when it reports earnigns Tuesday December 17 - but a surprise beat could go a long way to prove to investors that the Amazon hangover has been cured.
About the Data:
Thinknum tracks companies using the information they post online - jobs, social and web traffic, product sales and app ratings - and creates data sets that measure factors like hiring, revenue and foot traffic. Data sets may not be fully comprehensive (they only account for what is available on the web), but they can be used to gauge performance factors like staffing and sales.