Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) stock has been on fire lately. At $2,471 per share, Amazon has gained about 35% YTD (year-to-date). The company is ahead of other technology companies like Facebook, Apple, Netflix, and Alphabet in the FAANG group. Facebook stock has risen 13% YTD, while Apple stock has risen 9.6% for the year. Netflix stock is up 32%, while Alphabet stock has gained 7.0% for the year.
Amazon stock has risen due to the spike in online shopping amid COVID-19. The company scrambled to add fulfillment capacity to cope with rising demand for its e-commerce service. Households have been shopping online amid the pandemic to stay safe, which boosted Amazon’s e-commerce sales. The company reported 26% year-over-year jump in its first-quarter revenue. Consumers stocked up on household essentials.
Amazon stock and George Floyd protests
George Floyd, an unarmed black man, died in police custody in Minneapolis last week. His death sparked protests across the country. As protesters clash with police, the demand for self-defense items has spiked. Amazon has been filling the demand. According to CNBC, pepper spray is one of the best-selling items on Amazon. The demand has increased for Black Lives Matter merchandise and racial justice books on Amazon amid the George Floyd protests.
At this point, Amazon stock spots more than a 7.0% upside potential to its average target price at $2,645. The stock has more than 20% upside to its highest Wall Street target price at $3,000.
Beyond COVID-19 and protests
The coronavirus pandemic and protests following Floyd’s death have brought more shoppers to Amazon, which lifted the stock. However, investors have been flocking to Amazon stock for other reasons.
Amazon’s bid to increase its supply chain trust with blockchain technology also benefits the stock. The company has secured a patent about using blockchain in tracking the supply chain for product authentication. Amazon has battled a product counterfeiting problem for a long time. Last year, the company listed counterfeiting as a major risk factor for its business. Notably, the supply chain blockchain patent brings Amazon closer to addressing the counterfeiting problem.