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Data: FactSet; Chart: Jared Whalen/Axios

Last week may go down in the Big Tech history books.

Driving the news: Tesla displaced Facebook — which unveiled a new name, Meta Platforms — in the S&P 500’s top five companies by market cap. And Microsoft overtook Apple as the world’s most valuable company, for the first time in over a year.

Catch up quick: Earnings reports for Big Tech’s top five broke across a few dominant themes.

  • Cloud and services outperformed, driving Alphabet and Microsoft to new heights. But supply chain and labor costs dragged down Apple and Amazon's physical businesses, weighing on their stock prices after pre-earnings bumps.

Why it matters: These trends set the tone for the next few quarters, as many of the dynamics are unlikely to change in the short term.

  • As these giants go, so goes the market. The five largest companies in the S&P — Microsoft, Apple, Alphabet, Amazon, and now Tesla — make up 23.4% of the index as of Friday (as recently as year-end 2019, the top five S&P constituents were just 17% of the index).

What they’re saying: “It’s really a story of two different types of companies,” says Tony Roth, CIO at Wilmington Trust.

  • “Service providers’ input costs are not rising significantly. … On the other hand, [for Apple and Amazon], it's all stuff and people. And stuff and people bring lots of challenges as it relates to price pressure,” he says.

Reality check: Last week's tech stock laggards still made unfathomable sums of money. And the supply chain problems may start to iron themselves out sometime next year.

The bottom line: That kept valuations from falling further — and helped the S&P and Nasdaq surge to new record highs by Friday's close.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Dec 2, 2021 - Energy & Environment

Report: Markets like carbon-cutting firms

Expand chart
Data: Lazard Climate Center; Chart: Jared Whalen/Axios

Analysis of companies' market performance shows a relationship between emissions-cutting and higher share prices relative to earnings, a metric of investor confidence.

Driving the news: Lazard, a financial advisory firm, explored the equity values and emissions of over 16,000 companies in 2016-2020.

Manufacturing signals supply chain breather

Data: Institute for Supply Management; Chart: Axios Visuals

Manufacturing activity continued to tick up last month as pockets of the supply chain showed signs of relief, according to a new survey from the Institute for Supply Management.

Why it matters: Despite facing nearly two years of supply chain and consumer demand anomalies, manufacturers continued to increase their output for the 18th month in a row.

Scoop: Trump-backed Perdue says he wouldn’t have certified Georgia 2020 results

Perdue at a December 2020 campaign event in Columbus, Ga. Photo: Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images

Georgia gubernatorial candidate David Perdue wouldn’t have signed the certification of the state’s 2020 election results if he had been governor at the time, the former Senate Republican told Axios.

  • “Not with the information that was available at the time and not with the information that has come out now. They had plenty of time to investigate this. And I wouldn’t have signed it until those things had been investigated and that’s all we were asking for," he said.

Why it matters: There has been no evidence widespread fraud took place in Georgia's elections last year and the November results were counted three times, once by hand.