When 21st Century Fox's "Exodus: Gods and Kings" comes out on Friday, mall property developers such as Simon Property Group should benefit, if history is any guide.
Shopping mall operators had consistently high gains in a study of stock performance in the three months following the release of a major movie, according to Kensho, a quantitative data analytics tool.
The fundamental basis behind the data: Box office success leads to higher traffic in malls connected to cinemas, which in turn leads to higher rents malls can charge.
Simon had a median return of 8.3 percent. Macerich, whose properties include Broadway Plaza, Tysons Corner Center and Fashion Outlets of Niagara Falls, had a median return of 9.8 percent. Simon recently disclosed a 3.6 ownership stake in Macerich and a report by Evercore ISI said the announcement could be "an initial step in a possible merger of the two companies."
Queens Center operator Kimco Realty had a median return of 7.5 percent. All three firms traded positive 73 percent of the time.
In the same analysis, the S&P 500 traded in the green 67 percent of the time with a median return of just 2.8 percent.