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Bricks versus clicks

One shortage we have written about regularly – and again this week – is the shortage of microchips. Everything comes with chips these days, from cars to coffee machines to computers, and the squeeze is being keenly felt by manufacturers and could explain why my efforts to source a new printer earlier this year were met with frustration. It is interesting that this particular shortage has garnered more attention than any other – the pandemic revealing just how dependent on technology we appear to have become, to the extent that threats to our connected future seem existential – more so, it seems, than a roof over one’s head. 

Technology certainly appears to have become even more of a special case in the eyes of investors this year, hardly surprising given the performance of the FANMAGs or whatever you want to call them now. First-quarter results from some of the tech giants this week only underscore their appeal further – unstoppable cash-generating monsters with the deepest and widest economic moats you’ve ever seen. But if you want to own them, you’ve got to cough up a hefty price. 

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