Insights

Why Lyft Stock Leaped Today

What happened

Shares of Lyft (NASDAQ: LYFT) climbed 16.6% on Friday after the ride-sharing company said the number of both drivers and riders on its platform reached pandemic highs in the second quarter. 

So what

Lyft’s revenue jumped 30% year over year to $990.7 million. The gains were driven by a 15.9% rise in active riders, to 19.86 million, and an 11.8% increase in revenue per rider, to $49.89.

“Active riders and rides both hit post-COVID highs with rideshare rides up 27% year over year,” CEO Logan Green said in a press release.

A recovery in demand for travel-related services helped to bolster Lyft’s results, with airport trips accounting for more than 10% of its total rideshare rides during the quarter. 

More people are also signing up to drive for Lyft. “Total active drivers were the highest they’ve been in two years, reflecting a mix of new and returning drivers,” Green said during a conference call with analysts. 

Drivers earned an average of $37 per utilized hour, including tips and bonuses, in the second quarter. That was up 18% compared to the prior-year period. Higher compensation rates helped Lyft attract more drivers even as it scaled back on sign-up incentives. 

Lyft also cut back on hiring and laid off some employees. The company has instituted some cost-cutting measures and shut down some unprofitable business lines in recent months to prepare for a possible recession.

The cost cuts helped to improve Lyft’s profitability. Its adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) more than tripled to $79.1 million as its adjusted EBITDA margin rose to 8% from 3.1% in the year-ago period. That crushed Wall Street’s estimates. Analysts had expected Lyft to report adjusted EBITDA of only $20 million.  

Now what

Lyft expects its revenue to grow by 20% to 23% year over year to roughly $1.05 billion in the third quarter. Management also guided for adjusted EBITDA of $55 million to $65 million.

“We generated the highest Adjusted EBITDA in our company’s history and saw COVID highs for active riders, drivers, and rides,” Green said. “It’s clear consumer transportation is a good long-term business with a massive addressable market.”

Joe Tenebruso has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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