It’s rare that questions about where employees are at work can put stocks at risk, but getting back to work after the pandemic has become a hot topic in America.

According to a survey by Morning Consult, almost half (40%) of workers in the US say they would consider quitting their current job if they cannot work remotely permanently.

The problem of employees quitting instead of going back to the office is so widespread that the media are calling the trend “great resignation”. Many companies bend over to accommodate employees.

Management consultancy McKinsey & Co. conducted a survey of corporate executives that found that nine out of ten companies plan to use some form of remote and on-site work in the future.

However, some organizations are stepping down and demanding that everyone return to the office, drawing criticism from workers and the media. As the debate continues, let’s look at four stocks at risk as workers increasingly reject return to work plans from their employers.

  • Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL)
  • JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM)
  • Facebook (NASDAQ:FB)
  • Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS)

Return to Work Stocks at Risk: Apple (AAPL)

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Apple Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook received a letter in early June, signed by around 80 employees, expressing displeasure with the company’s plans to have them return to the office in the fall.

In an email to all employees, Cook told its nearly 140,000 global workforce that they would be expected back in the company’s offices after Labor Day in September this year. Cook stated that all employees are expected to work three days a week in the office and the other two days from home or a remote location.

Not all employees were satisfied with the return mandate. In an open letter to Cook shared with the media, the disgruntled staff stated:

“We feel that the current policy is not enough to meet many of our needs … It seems like the leadership team’s views on flexible working and the lived experiences of many Apple employees are not linked.”

The aftermath of the letter was quick as several people who signed it left the Silicon Valley company.

Fortunately, the public mockery of getting back to work hasn’t hurt Apple stock anytime soon. AAPL stock was up 13% last month to $ 146.84. We’ll see if there is more hostility at Apple in September once employees are expected back at their desks.

JPMorgan Chase (JPM)

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Jamie Dimon, chief executive officer of JPMorgan Chase, America’s largest bank with nearly $ 3 trillion in assets, is one of the loudest critics of home office politics.

Dimon has publicly stated his hatred of remote working agreements on several occasions, stating, “I am about to cancel all of my Zoom meetings. I’m done with it. “

Little concerned about the feelings of bank tellers who would rather work from home, Dimon said, “We want people to go back to work and I think it will look exactly like this sometime in September or October before … people don’t like to commute, but what the heck. “

In fact, JPMorgan has come back to work faster than most companies in America. The New York-based lender opened all of its US offices to employees with a 50% occupancy limit in early July.

The company now has all employees back in the office on a rotation schedule, with half in the office one day and the other half the next day. The bank says it wants 100% of its employees back in their offices five days a week by the fall. To date, there has been little public backlash against JPMorgan’s plans.

And the bank just announced better-than-expected results for the second quarter, with net profits up 155% on the release of loan loss reserves and an increase in investment banking income. JPM stock is up 22% year-to-date to $ 154.19.

Stocks at risk: Facebook (FB)

FB shares will weather short-term headwinds

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Social media giant Facebook appears to have listened to employee return concerns and has proposed a hybrid return to work plan.

The company announced in June that it is encouraging all employees to return to the office for at least half of their time now that the Covid-19 pandemic is receding. However, the company grants all employees 20 “remote days” annually, which they can use to work from home or another remote location.

In addition, employees can request permission to work remotely on a permanent basis from their manager and the company’s HR department, if their role permits.

There is no guarantee that permanent remote work requests will be approved. Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, told employees in a memo that he himself plans to gradually switch back to the office and work remotely for at least half of the next year before moving back to headquarters permanently. We’ll see how this approach plays out over the coming year.

Facebook shares rose sharply this year. In 2021, FB shares are up 32% to $ 353.72 so far.

Goldman Sachs (GS)

Goldman Sachs stock is gaining due to its strategic shift towards mainstream consumer

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Goldman Sachs is another major American bank that made us all return to the office.

The Wall Street investment bank reopened its offices to employees on June 14, and notified more than 5,000 recently hired interns, analysts and employees that they are expected to report to the office.

In a memo leaked to the media to all employees, the senior Goldman Sachs leadership team said, “We are now able to activate the next steps in our return to office strategy,” which means that the seats are at headquarters and in other locations around the country.

However, in a move that has drawn criticism both inside and outside the bank, Goldman Sachs is demanding that all 20,000 of its employees report their vaccination status. Taking steps that could send top talent looking for work with less virus exposure makes GS one of the stocks at risk when returning to work.

Although Goldman Sachs no longer requires all employees to be vaccinated, the lender strongly encourages employees to receive the vaccination. Goldman Sachs’ vaccination requirement has been hotly debated in the media over the past few weeks. It remains to be seen how compliant employees will handle the request.

Like JPMorgan Chase, Goldman Sachs just released blockbuster results for the second quarter, with earnings per share (EPS) up 140% year over year due to a robust IPO market. Since the start of the year, GS stock is up 41% to $ 374.10 per share.

Disclosure: On the day of publication, Joel Baglole held a long position in AAPL. The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and are subject to’s posting guidelines.