Thursday 18 May 2017

The “new normal” in business, Part II

[This follows The “new normal” in business on my professional Medium Channel.]

The banner image is from The Weird Thing about Today’s Internet in The Atlantic : the author muses on the concentration in the US Pacific Northwest of the five wealthiest companies in the world today by market capitalisation, all within that picture apparently. I was particularly taken by this quote:

In mid-May of 2007, these five companies were worth $577 billion. Now, they represent $2.9 trillion worth of market value! Not so far off from the combined market cap ($2.85) of the top 10 largest companies in the second quarter of 2007: Exxon Mobil, GE, Microsoft, Royal Dutch Shell, AT&T, Citigroup, Gazprom, BP, Toyota, and Bank of America.

And it’s not because the tech companies are being assigned astronomical price-to-earnings ratios as in the dot-com bust. Apple, for example, has a PE ratio (17.89) roughly equal to Walmart’s (17.34). Microsoft’s (30.06) is in the same class as Exxon’s (34.36).

My comment to that post was, however: “ Great post, but what about Baidu or Alibaba the Chinese Amazon?” So I went about finding market cap data for those two, as well as GAFA (Google, Amazon, Facebook, Apple) and others mentioned: Microsoft, Exxon Mobil and Walmart. In brief, GAFAM are the tenors of the future mentioned above, Alibaba is the Chinese response to Amazon, while ExxonMobil and Walmart are the tenors of the past.

So I took out a week trial subscription to Ycharts, Yahoo’s excellent financial data portal — kudos to them for posting clearly and intuitively such a vast array of data — and scraped the afore-mentioned data.

Go to my Medium professional Channel to read the full story.

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