Coca-Cola tops profit forecast, eyes 2021 rebound

Coca-Cola topped fourth quarter profit estimates and that is fueling optimism within the company that 2021 will be a better year.

Quarterly results released Wednesday showed the soft drink giant still had to cut costs aggressively during the October to December quarter to offset negative financial impacts caused by the health crisis.

A third of its revenues come from non-retail channels such as restaurants, movie theaters and sporting events, which were either closed or opened with dramatically reduced capacity. Coca-Cola expects that to change in the coming year as more people get vaccinated.

Revenues last quarter dropped 5 percent, which was a slightly bigger drop than anticipated.

To counter the softness in the market, the soft drink giant has been busy trimming brands that have not been selling well. It is also shifting more focus to popular drinks such as sparkling waters and zero-sugar sodas.

Coca-Cola is also undergoing a major restructuring that includes the loss of thousands of jobs.

Investors believe the global giant is doing the right things to prepare for a rebound in demand and sent the stock higher in Wednesday trading.