Despite a weather-delayed start to the golf season around much of the United States, recent trends on Wall Street are proving that the golf industry is in a good place.
The S&P 500 Index has more than doubled in the last nine years since the sub-prime mortgage crash, reaching an all-time high in January. Yet, since hitting its high-water mark of 2,872.87 on Jan. 26, 2018, the S&P has dipped roughly 6 percent, reported GolfDigest.com’s Luke Kerr-Dineen. One industry is proving to be averse to those declining trends: golf.
Callaway and Titleist, two of the sports juggernauts in the original equipment manufacturing space, are proving to be immune to the latest downturn. Callaway (which trades as ELY) has gone up 15% in the same three-month period that saw the S&P dip while Acushnet (which trades as GOLF), Titleist’s parent company, is up 10% over the last three months.
A pretty good March for golf vs. last March, says @golfDatatech:
Woods: UP 7% in units, 23% in dollars
Balls: UP 1% in units and dollars
Irons: UP 16% in units; 30% in dollars
Putters: UP 5% in units
Wedges: UP 42% in units, 46% in dollars
Shoes: UP 10% in units and dollars
— Mike Stachura (@MikeStachura) April 23, 2018
While Tiger Woods’ latest return has garnered a recent uptick in television ratings, the “burgeoning bull market” that Jim Cramer described golf as on his CNBC show “Mad Money” is more a result of the two headliners long-range success.
Callaway is up 75% in the last three years thanks to sound investments such as their stake in Topgolf as well as strong consumer sales numbers that are up more than 20% year over year. For their part, Titleist’s price is up 35% since its IPO debuted in late 2016.
It would appear as if the volatility of the golf space during the Tiger boom is settling in nicely as Woods enters the twilight of his career. While Woods will continue to chase his ghost, investors may need to give another look to golf-centric companies even as Woods fades away.