- The revenue composition of Uber changed due to the pandemic, tilting more towards delivery services with declining rideshare revenues.
- The sustainability of the rideshare industry is also being questioned.
- How Uber can adapt to the post-pandemic era will determine its future growth prospects.
Uber Technologies Inc. (NYSE: UBER), better known as Uber, is an American technology company. It offers ride-hailing, food and package delivery, courier and freight transportation services. Uber was founded in 2009 and is headquartered in San Francisco, California.
This is your guide to using an online broker to invest in Uber from Australia.
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Uber develops and operates technology applications that support a variety of offerings on its platform. Through its Mobility, Delivery and Freight segments the company connects consumers with providers of ride services, merchants and food delivery services as well as public transportation networks. Its Mobility segment also includes Uber for business (U4B), financial partnerships, transit and vehicle solutions. In a partnership with Lime, Uber also offers electric bicycle and scooter rentals. In some markets, Uber delivery also extends to grocery and convenience store delivery. Uber's Freight segment connects carriers with shippers on its platform with shipment booking.
Uber subsidiaries include Uber Eats, Cornershop, Postmates, and Careem among others.
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Step 1: Choose a broker
There are plenty of online brokers to choose from, offering different options. There are some key features to look for when choosing a broker.
The ability to buy shares with no commission is an increasingly widespread feature. And since the cost of commission can add up quickly, not having to pay saves you money and means your investment can — potentially — generate a positive return faster.
Fractional share investing
Fractional share investing means you can buy a part of a share rather than the whole thing. That means you can buy shares in companies that would otherwise be above your budget and makes it easier to diversify your portfolio.
Easy-to-use trading platform
Trading in shares needn’t be complicated, so keep an eye out for a trading platform that is straightforward to use. Most brokers have a high end design, but it’s worth considering who it has been designed for, i.e. beginner or experienced.
Research and reporting
If you aren’t a conviction investor and need data and insight before investing your money, then look for a platform that has analyst recommendations, forecasts, etc.
Step 2: Fund your trading account
Next, send funds to your account. Brokers generally accept bank transfers. Some may also accept credit and debit cards, POLi, PayID, PayPal, etc. If you have just opened your trading account, beware it may take some time for the funds to clear before you can start trading with them.
Step 3: Decide how much you want to invest
The chance for fractional share investing — available at many online brokers — is a real bonus. Fractional investing means you can start small with much reduced risk. And since you don’t have to buy the full share, you can invest more regularly with smaller amounts and dollar cost average.
Step 4: Decide whether to buy shares or invest in an ETF
You can purchase shares directly and own them, or you can choose to invest in an Exchange Traded Fund (ETF) that includes Uber shares, for example Vanguard Total Stock Market ETF, ETFMG Travel Tech ETF, and Invesco NASDAQ Internet ETF.
Investing in ETFs are not usually so interesting to active traders, because you have less control over where your money goes. However, they are a less volatile way to invest.
Step 5: Set up your order
There are different order types which can be used to customise what you buy and how much you buy it for. The main different order types are:
An order to buy/sell shares immediately. This guarantees the execution of the order, but not the price.
Let’s say Uber shares are trading at US$43. You place a buy order but by the time the order executes the price has dropped to US$42. Your purchase will go through at a lower price. The same principle applies for price rises.
For buy limit orders, execution-only happens at the nominated price or lower. For example, you may want to purchase Uber stock for no more than US$45. Submit a limit order for that amount and it will only be executed if the Uber share price falls to US$45 or below.
This type of order means your shares are sold at a specific price or higher. Let’s say you want to sell your Uber shares at US$45 a share. When the shares reach that price, your stop limit order will execute.
You set a price at which you decide it is no longer worth holding your shares. Let’s say for example you nominate US$44 as the price at which you will sell your Uber shares. If the price drops to that level, your stop loss order will execute.
Step 6: Place the order
Once you have chosen a broker, funded your account based on the amount you wish to invest and decided how to invest in your Uber shares based on the order type, it's time to place the order. This will normally happen at the click of a button.
Step 7: Monitor your investment
You can buy shares to benefit from price fluctuations, that is speculation, or to hold as long term investments. Once you buy shares it is necessary to keep track of both share price movements and the company’s performance. Watch out for how Uber performs in terms of strategy, financial fundamentals and its share price movements.
Watch for developments in the rideshare industry
The rideshare industry includes the subsegments of on-demand taxis (like Uber, Lyft, Careem), car share companies (Zipcar), and scooter rentals (Lime and Bird).
In theory, the use of rideshare services should reduce traffic on the road and demand for taxis.
However, ridesharing has contributed to traffic congestion in some cities. The sustainability of the rideshare business model is also being questioned since both Lyft and Uber were making losses even before the pandemic. They have also been slow to embrace electric vehicles.
During 2020, while Uber’s rideshare revenues dropped it saw a more than proportionate increase in delivery revenues. At the same time, during the pandemic, many Uber and Lyft drivers moved to delivery companies such as InstaCart, Doordash and Amazon Flex. Once economies started opening up, the rideshare industry experienced a severe driver shortage.
Uber's main rideshare competitor is Lyft. However, around the world it also competes with cabs and car share companies. In the delivery niche, it faces competition from courier companies such as DHL and UPS as well as local postal services.
Disclaimer: We put our customer’s needs first. The views expressed in this article are those of the writer’s alone and do not constitute financial advice. Advertisers cannot influence editorial content. However, Finty and/or the writer may have a financial interest in the companies mentioned. Finty is committed to providing factual, honest, and accurate information that is compliant with governing laws and regulations. Do your own due diligence and seek professional advice before deciding to invest in one of the products mentioned. For more information, see Finty’s editorial guidelines and terms and conditions.