Caesars, DraftKings, Other Gaming Stocks Miss Out on Nasdaq-100 Promotion

Caesars Entertainment (NASDAQ:CZR) and DraftKings (NASDAQ:CZR) are among the well-known gaming equities that missed out on promotion to the Nasdaq-100 Index (NDX).

gaming stocks
The Nasdaq market site in New York. Several gaming stocks missed out on promotion to the Nasdaq-10 Index. (Image: Bloomberg)

On Friday, Nasdaq announced the annual changes to the widely followed equity gauge, noting six companies will be added to the index while seven will be removed. Including Caesars and DraftKings, none of the gaming stocks that entered 2022 as contenders to join the Nasdaq-100 were elevated to that prominent index.

The Nasdaq-100 Index is composed of the 100 largest non-financial companies listed on The Nasdaq Stock Market and dates to January 1985 when it was launched,” according to the exchange operator.

The six companies joining the index are CoStar Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSGP), Rivian Automotive, Inc. (NASDAQ: RIVN), Warner Bros. Discovery, Inc. (NASDAQ: WBD), GlobalFoundries Inc. (NASDAQ: GFS), Baker Hughes Company (NASDAQ :BKR), and Diamondback Energy, Inc. (NASDAQ: FANG).

Slumps Prevent Gaming Stocks From NDX

The Nasdaq-100 is cap-weighted index, meaning the largest component – in this case Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) – receives the largest weight, and so on.

Market capitalization is also a key element in the benchmark’s annual rebalance, and that explains why Nasdaq-listed gaming stocks didn’t land the coveted promotion this year. For example, Caesars is lower by 47.25% year-to-date, while DraftKings is off 49.18%.

Both gaming stocks remain remembers of the NASDAQ Next Generation 100 Index, which is a proving grounds of sorts for entry into NDX. Penn Entertainment (NASDAQ:PENN) is the other gaming equity in the next generation index. Down 36.34% year-to-date, Penn was also booted from the S&P 500 in September.

With the benefit of an almost 32% surge just this quarter, Wynn Resorts (NASDAQ:WYNN) is flat on the year. But even with a market capitalization of $9.79 billion, the stock isn’t a member of NDX, nor does it reside in the next generation index.

Why It Matters to Gaming Stocks

Inclusion in major equity benchmarks such as the Nasdq-100 is relevant to publicly traded companies. That’s because addition means active fund managers and issuers of index funds and exchange traded funds (ETFs) that track the index need to purchase shares of the newly added companies.

Specific to the Nasdaq-100, there’s massive amounts capital allocated to that index. For example, the Invesco QQQ (NASDAQ:QQQ) has $156.29 billion in assets under management, making it one of the largest ETFs in the world. The lower-cost Invesco NASDAQ 100 ETF (NASDAQ:QQQM) is just 26 months and already has $5.88 billion in assets.

Translation: Caesars, DraftKings, and the other gaming stocks mentioned here that are Nasdaq-listed missed out on a potential catalyst by failing to cobble together enough 2022 upside to merit promotion to the Nasdaq-100 Index.

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