On Wednesday, Jeff Bezos spent a few uncomfortable hours squirming before a congressional antitrust committee as lawmakers asked him whether his company, Amazon.com, has too much power.
Less than two days later, Bezos is about a billion dollars richer, according to a real-time wealth tracker from Forbes, after Amazon reported a yet another blockbuster quarter that left analysts’ estimates in the dust. Earnings per share for the second quarter were $10.30. Wall Street was expecting about $2.09.
Shares of Amazon opened at a staggering $3,241.20 this morning, up more than 5% over the previous day. Some analysts are now setting a price target of $4,000, MarketWatch reports. That would be more than double where it was at the beginning of the year.
The coronavirus pandemic, a crisis for everyone else, has been a boon for Amazon, as shelter-in-place orders have kept people home and in need of constant deliveries. Physical stores are shuttered, shopping malls have been abandoned, and bankruptcy filings are the new normal for legacy retail brands. For many consumers, whatever habitual attachment they had to physical stores before the pandemic has probably already evaporated, and the shift to online shopping will be a permanent one.
In an earnings release, Bezos said Amazon spent $4 billion on “incremental COVID-19-related costs” in the last quarter. Three months ago, he said investors would have to “take a seat” as the company poured resources into keeping employees safe and ramping up productivity in the face of overwhelming demand. But investors clearly haven’t. They know better. That’s because it’s hard to picture another company more perfectly poised to thrive in a pandemic-ravaged world than Amazon, from its robot-charged warehouses, to its sprawling delivery network, to its increasing command over the very infrastructure that powers the internet.
You can check out the full earnings report here.