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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The world’s biggest tech companies are about to open up their books — and some are expected to serve up record-shattering numbers.

Why it matters: The pandemic made many Americans even more dependent on these companies. That put a massive gust of wind — to the tune of billions of dollars — into the sails of Big Tech.

  • For now, forecasters see few signs of this fading.

Where it stands: Microsoft, reporting tomorrow, is estimated to have booked the highest revenue figure in its history, helped by its cloud and gaming businesses, per WSJ.

Also on tap this week:

  • Revenue at Alphabet is expected to outpace the company's first quarter record, helped by voracious internet advertising demand.
  • The signs of that hot ad market already showed up in Snap and Twitter's financial results — and Facebook is expected to reap the benefits too.
  • Amazon could log over $100 billion in sales (yes, in a single quarter) for the third time ever. That never happened before the pandemic.
  • Apple's sales are set to leap over what it posted this time last year.

The elephant in the room: Antitrust scrutiny has increased since the last time the companies released earnings, says Wedbush analyst Dan Ives.

  • Big Tech foe Lina Khan was sworn in as head of the Federal Trade Commission, and longtime Google critic Jonathan Kanter is set to lead the antitrust division of the Department of Justice.
  • Meanwhile, Congress is batting around a suite of antitrust bills.

But, but, but: None of these developments have made a dent in these companies' soaring stock prices.

  • "This is an elongated battle between the Beltway and Big Tech that is not slowing down," says Ives.

Stat to go: The five names alone are a record 22.9% of the S&P 500.

Go deeper

Ina Fried, author of Login
Updated Oct 28, 2021 - Technology

Apple shares fall as quarterly revenue misses expectations

An Apple store in Changsha, China. Photo: Apple

Apple on Thursday posted quarterly revenue that fell just short of expectations despite marking a record for a September quarter, while its earnings were roughly in line with what analysts were predicting.

Between the lines: Apple, like other companies, is dealing with supply chain issues due to a chip shortage and other pandemic-related disruptions. Apple's stock fell nearly 5% in after-hours trading.

Oct 28, 2021 - Technology

Facebook changes corporate name to Meta

Screen shot of CEO Mark Zuckerberg at the company's "Connect" virtual event

CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Thursday said the social media giant is renaming its company Meta.

Why it matters: The effort is meant to shift its image from a social media platform to a “metaverse” company that focuses on building virtual work and social communities.

Ina Fried, author of Login
37 mins ago - Technology
Column / Signal Boost

Exclusive: Meta's civil rights chief aims to "turn the knob" for good

Photo Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios. Photo: Meta

A year ago, Facebook brought in Roy Austin, Jr. to lead a new team focused on civil rights. Since then, he has assembled a squad of experts advising parent company Meta on everything from voting rights to hate speech to ensuring new products don't have discriminatory impact.

The big picture: Austin's team of nine must tackle those tough issues inside a company of nearly 70,000 employees serving more than 3 billion users around the world.