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WeWork occupancy returns to pre-pandemic levels

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Yahoo Finance Live takes a look at WeWork's reported work space occupancy compared to pre-pandemic figures.

Video Transcript

DAVE BRIGGS: Shares of WeWork down more than 6% today after missing earnings estimates on the top and bottom line. But there is some good news in their support. For the first time since their occupancy rate-- since the first time since the pandemic, it is now at 72%, which matches their pre-pandemic occupancy rate. Most people, Brian, had kind of turned their back on the concept of WeWork entirely, but clearly, there is a rebound here.

Now, I need to dive further into the data. Presumably, that's more in rural areas. I always thought the model really made sense for people that don't live in big cities that still want a common place to work, but don't want to make the commute here to New York City, to Chicago, to Los Angeles, to San Francisco.

BRIAN CHEUNG: Yeah, certainly. I mean, you do kind of wonder also to what degree these factors, like, just the fatigue of people two years out, right? We're lapping two years out from having gone into a work from home situation. A lot of companies that are even technically full remote are saying it might be good every now and then to bring everyone together in one space.

And where would you do that other than a WeWork, right? You're not going to get a short-term lease just to make that happen. So you're kind of hearing these anecdotes of even these small startup companies say, hey, why not just rent out a WeWork for a few months? So maybe that's behind some of that trend as well.

DAVE BRIGGS: And some people just, quite frankly, have had enough of working at home, the distractions, the lack of productivity. Maybe that's a chance to go somewhere 5 minutes away instead of the hour long commute that you have to a major city.

BRIAN CHEUNG: I gotta say, one other factor, too, this summer has been a scorcher, right? I think a lot of people--


BRIAN CHEUNG: --they just want to go to an office and take advantage of AC. Like, I don't know about you. They keep this particular studio and the offices upstairs super cool.

DAVE BRIGGS: That's how it works.

BRIAN CHEUNG: That's money I don't have to pay on my Con Ed bill, so I'm going to embrace that 10 out of 10 times for sure.

DAVE BRIGGS: It's glorious. One last note, have you seen "WeCrashed"?

BRIAN CHEUNG: I have not. I heard things about it.

DAVE BRIGGS: Oh, wow. It was terrific.

BRIAN CHEUNG: Oh, is it? OK.

DAVE BRIGGS: Highly recommended. Jared Leto just did an incredible job--

BRIAN CHEUNG: I'll have to add that to my list.

DAVE BRIGGS: --playing Adam Neumann. Bare feet, the odd, you know, eccentricities.

BRIAN CHEUNG: That's such a bizarre thing.

DAVE BRIGGS: Oh, it was a terrific series. Who told you that? You have the wrong critics. Excellent series. I highly recommend.