American tech titans flew high before the coronavirus pandemic, making billions of dollars a year.
Now, the upheaval has lifted them to new heights, putting the industry in a position to dominate American business in a way unseen since the days of railroads.
A rally in technology stocks elevated the S&P 500 stock index to a record high on Tuesday even as the pandemic crushes the broader economy. The stocks of Apple, Amazon, Alphabet, Microsoft and Facebook, the five largest publicly traded companies in America, rose 37 percent in the first seven months this year, while all the other stocks in the S&P 500 fell a combined 6 percent, according to Credit Suisse.
Those five companies now constitute 20 percent of the stock market’s total worth, a level not seen from a single industry in at least 70 years. Apple’s stock market value, the highest of the bunch, reached $2 trillion on Wednesday — double what it was just 21 weeks ago.