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Photo illustration: Axios Visuals

The coronavirus pandemic is already posing a drag on Airbnb bookings and revenue, according to new data from research firm AirDNA.

Why it matters: This can't be good news for Airbnb, which has been planning to go public in 2020, in part because some employee stock grants will expire by year's end.

The big picture: Despite touting its healthy business and billions in cash, Airbnb last quarter ramped up its spending—and thus, losses—on growth and marketing in preparation for its IPO, according to Bloomberg.

  • It had a loss of $276.4 million excluding interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, compared with $143.7 million a year earlier.
  • Revenue grew 32% over the same period to $1.1 billion.
  • The company expected bookings to grow 25% during the first quarter of 2020 — likely underestimating COVID-19's impact, Bloomberg reported.

By the numbers, per AirDNA:

  • Overall short-term rental supply: Largely unchanged between January and March, except for a small decline in China.
  • Weekly Airbnb revenue: There's been a downward trend since roughly mid-February across various major cities globally, and so far for the beginning of May, most destinations are averaging about half of the bookings made back in February.
  • Reservations by date booked (change between early January and early March): 96% drop for Beijing, 71% in Shanghai, 46% in Seoul, 41% in Rome, 29% in both Tokyo and Milan.
  • Beijing Airbnb revenue: While it grew nearly 130% year-over-year in January, February saw a 22.2% drop from 2019, and March saw a decline of nearly 43%.

Go deeper

Federal judge blocks Biden's vaccine mandate for federal workers

President Biden speaking from Eisenhower Executive Office Building on Jan. 21. Photo: Yuri Gripas/Abaca/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A federal judge in Texas blocked the Biden administration from enforcing its coronavirus vaccine mandate for federal workers on Friday, citing the outcome of last week's Supreme Court ruling that nullified the administration's vaccine-or-test requirement for large employers.

Why it matters: It's a blow to President Biden's efforts to increase the U.S.' vaccination rates, though much of the federal workforce has already been vaccinated against the virus.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

  1. Health: Pfizer and Moderna boosters overwhelmingly prevent Omicron hospitalizations, CDC finds — Omicron pushes COVID deaths toward 2,000 per day — The pandemic-proof health care giant.
  2. Vaccines: The case for Operation Warp Speed 2.0 — Starbucks drops worker vaccine or test requirement after SCOTUS ruling — Kids' COVID vaccination rates are particularly low in rural America.
  3. Politics: Biden concedes U.S. should have done more testing — Arizona says it "will not be intimidated" by Biden on anti-mask school policies.
  4. World: American Airlines flight to London forced to turn around over mask dispute — WHO: COVID health emergency could end this year — Greece imposes vaccine mandate for people 60 and older — Austria approves COVID vaccine mandate for adults.
  5. Variant tracker
Updated 4 hours ago - Economy & Business

Janet Yellen co-opts Reaganomics phrase for new Davos speech

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen at a speech this week. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The U.S. needs to focus on increasing its productive potential, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen told world leaders Friday, calling for what she terms "modern supply side economics."

Why it matters: She co-opted a phrase traditionally used by political conservatives to describe low-tax and deregulatory policies — and framed the Biden administration's initiatives as the best path forward to achieve greater national prosperity.