It’s hard to remember that there’s still a pandemic going on. Vaccination rates have increased and it looks like we may be on the cusp of a roaring 20s. Consumers are healthy and eager to make up for lost time–booking travel and eating out. Offices will probably re-open by the end of summer but working from home is likely to remain an option.
Succinct Summary: There were a lot of major data points about the economy last week but the biggest news of all seemed to be just how well tech companies did despite the massive economic dislocation. In a quarter where GDP fell at a 33% annualized rate, Apple managed to grow revenue by 11%! Stimulus probably played some role in tech companies’ strong performance, but beyond the stimulus is the fact that COVID has pushed everyone to spend even more time at home and on the internet. The behavioral shifts appear to be long-lasting too. 20 years after the dot com bubble, the internet is still not done reshaping society.
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Succinct Summary: We are clearly in a recession with very low visibility on how we are going to come out of it. Companies are also seeing consumers move away from credit as they also shift away from discretionary spending. On the positive, there are some promising signs of recovery as shorter cycle businesses like auto come back.