Disney World operations could take years to return to normal, analyst says

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — A securities analyst from Wells Fargo said it could take years for theme-park operations to get back to normal.

Analyst Steven Cahall has downgraded the Walt Disney company mostly because of the impact COVID-19 has had on theme parks.

Read: Disney to furlough ‘unnecessary’ staff during pandemic shutdown, company announces

He said this is not a demand-driven downturn like the parks saw in 2008 and 2009. However, the impact will still be big.

He said he expects no attendance for the rest of the fiscal year, and parks working at a 50% capacity in fiscal 2021.

Read: SeaWorld to furlough more than 90% of employees due to coronavirus pandemic

“Until the time at which there is significantly improved testing and/or a widely available vaccine it’s tough for us to imagine long lines for Rise of the Resistance, no matter how much folks might want to go to WDW deep down,” Cahall wrote.

He also said that with no attendance at the parks, that means significantly lower occupancy at hotels and resorts, and almost no revenue coming in for the cruise line industry in the foreseeable future.

Jeff Deal

Jeff Deal, WFTV.com

I joined the Eyewitness News team as a reporter in 2006.

Adam Poulisse, WFTV.com

Adam Poulisse joined WFTV in November 2019.