Saturday, June 17, 2017

Amazon's Shark

"Here we go, Fonz, I'm heading for the ramp. Are you sure you want to do it?"
--Richie Cunningham (Happy Days)

Market bubbles often climax with a 'jump-the-shark' moment. The dot com bubble jumped the shark when internet upstart America Online (AOL) ponied up nearly $200 billion to buy media giant Time Warner. This buyout nearly top ticked the market in 2000.

Yesterday, Amazon announced that it was buying grocer Whole Foods Markets (WFM) for about $13 billion. While the size of the deal is nothing like the AOL/Time Warner whopper of yore, it speaks to the veracity of mega cap tech companies reaching into industries unlike their core markets--leading to the perception that tech is 'taking over America.'

Perhaps. On the other hand, it could merely be symptomatic of hubris fostered by stock prices that have been on a multi-year moonshot that are likely to reverse sooner rather than later.

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