Hertz’s stock doubles to erase all post-bankrupty losses

Hertz’s stock doubles to erase all post-bankrupty losses

Car rental company’s stock price has bounced nearly 7-fold in 3 days, 888% off its record low

Shares of Hertz Global Holdings Inc. were vaulted higher in very active trading on Monday, enough to erase all the losses suffered since the car rental company declared bankruptcy, amid increasing signs that travel demand continues to improve.

The stock HTZ, +115.17% shot up 115.2% to $5.53 on record trading volume of more than 517.5 million shares. After running up 71.3% on Friday on 342.2 million shares, and 83.8% on Thursday on 268.0 million shares, the stock has now gained nearly 7-fold (up 574.4%) in three days, and almost 10-fold since closing at a record low of 56 cents on May 26.

That record low was set the next business day after Hertz declared bankruptcy after the Friday, May 22 closing bell, as the debt-laden company suffered as the COVID-19 pandemic brought travel to a near standstill.

The stock closed 94.7% above where it ended on May 22, at $2.84, just before the bankruptcy.

In comparison, shares of rival Avis Budget Group Inc. CAR, +2.70% rallied 2.7% on Monday, have hiked up 36.1% amid a 4-day win streak and have advanced 93.1% since May 22. The S&P 500 index SPX, +1.20% has climbed 9.4% since May 22.

The company has not issued any press releases recently. Meanwhile, filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission over the past several days showed that Henry Keizer, a member of the board of directors, sold 7,438 shares of common stock on June 4 and fellow Director Daniel Ninivaggi sold 3,000 shares on June 5. And Joseph McPherson, executive vice president of North America Operations, recently sold 11,865 shares of common stock.

The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The recent rally comes amid increasing signs that demand for travel continues to improve off the lows seen in April.

Data from the Transportation Security Administration showed that the daily average of travelers going through TSA checkpoints rose to 361,610 during the week ended June 7 from 305,358 the previous week, and has increased every week since bottoming at 97,799 during the week ended April 19, according to a MarketWatch analysis of government data. And the decline in the daily average per week from the same period a year ago has improved to 85.4% from 87.4% the previous week, and has improved each week since topping out at 95.8% during the April 19 week.

American Airlines Group Inc. AAL, +9.25% said last week that it expects to fly in July 2020 about 55% of the domestic capacity flow during July 2019, leading to a record one-day gain last Thursday. And Alaska Air Group Inc. ALK, +17.60% said last week that flown capacity in June is expected to improve to 70% to 75% of last year’s levels, from 79% in May.

Also helping provide a bump, as Hertz has been selling vehicles used as collateral on debt, automotive retailer Lithia Motors Inc. LAD, -1.97% said last week that it experienced “notable improvements” in May across its business lines, after seeing sales declines in March and April as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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