Corporate event data vendor, Wall Street Horizon, recently reported that the number of Wall Street oriented conferences, roadshows, analyst meetings and company conference calls rose a modest 5.5% in July and August of 2021 when compared to the same period last year.
Wall Street Events – July & August of 2021
According to data provided by Wall Street Horizon, the total number of Wall Street related conferences and related events during July and August of 2021 plunged 53% from the total number of events held in May and June 2021. However, the number of events in the past two months rose a modest 5.5% to 675 events from the 638 events recorded during the same period of last year, and rose a meager 0.6% from the 671 events that were recorded in 2019.
When you take a look at the underlying types of events that took place in the past few months, it reveals an interesting pattern. The total number of bank and industry conferences held in July and August of 2021 rose 5.7% when compared to the same period in the previous year. This compares to the number of analyst meetings or investor days which actually surged 62%, while the number of company travel or roadshows fell a modest 6% in July and August of 2021 compared to 2020. The number of company conference calls held during July and August of 2021 rose 45% when compared to the same period of last year. Purely bank sponsored events (conferences, analyst meetings, and company roadshows) were weaker (-17.7%) in July and August of 2021 versus the same period last year.
When compared to July and August of 2019, the total number of bank and industry conferences held in the same period this year fell 17.8%. This compares to the number of analyst meetings or investor days which rose a modest 3.0%, while the number of company travel or roadshows fell 40% in July and August of 2021 compared to 2019. The number of company conference calls held during July and August of 2021 surged 44.7% when compared to the same period in 2019.
As we have written about in the past, the COVID-19 pandemic had a negative impact on the number of sell-side sponsored conferences, roadshows, and analyst meetings held during 2020 when compared to prior years. The data for 2021 reveals that sell-side events have rebounded to pre-pandemic levels, though the sharp drop in sell-side events this July and August is consistent with the seasonal pattern we have seen in recent years.
Despite the rebound in Wall Street events seen in 2021, the more important question is when will buy-side payments for these events eclipse pre-pandemic levels? Most buy-side firms claim that the conferences and analyst meetings in 2020 and so far in 2021 have been far less valuable than in the previous years where attendance was scarce, the questions were more focused, and high quality in person networking was available.
It will be interesting to see if the sell-side is able to reestablish the value associated with these research related events. We suspect that once in-person events become safe to attend, the sell-side will try a variety of innovative ways to recapture the mystique these events once offered the buy-side.