As AirBnb (ABNB) apartment rental service updated its 20-month highs after jumping by nearly 10% within two days from its dips of February 14, its peer TripAdvisor (TRIP) accompanied the tourist sector rally after adding more than 27% to its market value since the beginning of the week. The business of TripAdvisor was limited in catching-up growth after the corona pandemic, so that it has not such a strong recovery momentum compared to or AirBnb. However, resilient travel demand helped TripAdvisor even much better than it was expected for the Christmas season, the latest numbers from the quarterly report revealed.

In particular, the well-known travel guide company generated $390 million of revenue against an average analyst poll's consensus at $375 million. This was a 27% decline from the promising third quarter with its $533 million all-time record, yet the latest seasonal result came 10% higher YoY, compared to Q4 2022, and also 14% better for the whole year of 2023 vs pre-COVID levels in 2019. On a full-year basis, the sales added almost 20%. What is more important, adjusted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.38 was substantially higher than $0.22 in consensus estimates.

The company's profit was resilient despite operating expenses growth due to inflation pressure and tougher macroeconomic conditions. TripAdvisor's CEO Matt Goldberg emphasized he was quite satisfied with the fiscal 2023 results, highlighting the achievement of an all-time high revenue, when a record number of $1.788 has been reached. He separately mentioned the diversification of the company's portfolio, with the Experiences segment accounting for over 40% of the company's whole sales. That marked a strategic shift and a fundamental basis for extending gains.

Wall Street crowds are seemingly more confident in the company's prospects than several months ago. Some analysts recently labelled the company with Outperform rating. Yet, some trace of a previous cautious mood is also here. For example, Bernstein maintained its Outperform estimate, yet with $28 price target, while the stock price already hit $27.66 for the market's close on February 15. The average 12-month price target from the analyst pool on Reuters is at $26.4, ranging from $18 to $35, compared to a nearly $65 high of 2021.

Although 2023 results were nominally the best Tripadvisor ever printed as a public company, the misty horizon has not disappeared completely. Expenditures for marketing purposes are also high due to inflation, and tougher macroeconomic conditions that could make the profit thinner. From a technical point of view, gaining a foothold above $30 per share is needed to attract more investment flows.