Amazon's Impact

Ploutos profile picture


  • A full one-fifth of the S&P 500 constituents referenced Amazon on a quarterly earnings calls or Investor Day in the last 90 days.
  • The scope and scale of the companies and industries referencing Amazon show the tremendous competitive reach of the e-commerce giant.
  • Amazon's unique business model and its focus on growth over earnings pit it as a challenge to a host of profitable industries.

As second-quarter earnings wind down, I thought it would be an interesting study to examine how frequently Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) was brought up on quarterly earnings calls. In 2017, we have certainly seen the impact of Amazon on the share prices of retailers (XRT), retail and industrial REITs, and the grocery industry, among others. Given the negative impacts on some of these sectors, understanding where analysts and management teams are concerned about Amazon could help Seeking Alpha readers find stocks to avoid or short. Conversely, some companies view Amazon, especially its cloud business, as a complement to their own business, and this examination could also potentially uncover opportunities.

Fortunately, I did not have to go through hundreds of earnings transcripts with a highlighter to categorize the "Amazon" mentions. I used the beta Text Analyzer function on my Bloomberg terminal and searched the last ninety days earnings transcripts of S&P 500 (SPY) constituents. The results were pretty interesting.

A full one-hundred companies mentioned Amazon on their earnings calls or during a recent investor day. The interesting part of this study for me was the sheer diversity of the industries that referenced the e-commerce giant.

In the following sections, I wanted to highlight the main pockets of concern for investors in the one-fifth of the index referencing Amazon on their earnings call. Some of the sectors are certainly obvious, but others less so. In detailing these relationships, hopefully we are able to glean some important observations about a changing economic landscape.

Real Estate

Sixteen different REITs mentioned Amazon on their earnings call. The retail REITs are certainly concerned about e-commerce's disruption of brick-and-mortar retail. The purchase of Whole Foods (WFM) by Amazon puts a little pressure on grocery-anchored retail centers that were expected to be less exposed to the changing face of

This article was written by

Ploutos profile picture
Institutional investment manager authoring on a variety of topics that pique my interest, and could further discourse in this online community. I hold an MBA from the University of Chicago, and have earned the CFA designation. My articles may contain statements and projections that are forward-looking in nature, and therefore inherently subject to numerous risks, uncertainties and assumptions. While my articles focus on generating long-term risk-adjusted returns, investment decisions necessarily involve the risk of loss of principal. Individual investor circumstances vary significantly, and information gleaned from my articles should be applied to your own unique investment situation, objectives, risk tolerance, and investment horizon.

Disclosure: I am/we are long SPY. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

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