by John Rubino
First it was the banks reporting horrendous numbers — largely, we were told, because of their exposure to recently-cratered energy companies. Now it’s Big Tech, which is a much harder thing to explain. The FAANGs (Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix and Google) own their niches and not so long ago were expected to generate strong growth pretty much forever. That’s why every large-cap mutual fund and most hedge funds (not to mention a few central banks) owned so much of them.
This year’s first quarter was emphatically not what their fans had in mind. Apple, for instance, reported not just a slowdown but a double-digit year-over-year sales decline: