- The combined weighting of Apple and Microsoft in the S&P 500 has grown to about 13.3%.
- That’s the most that two stocks have dominated the index since 1978, the Wall Street Journal said.
- Shares of the tech giants have surged as investor seek safety amid the bank crisis.
Citing data from Strategas Securities, the Wall Street Journal said Apple and Microsoft now account for about 13.3% of the S&P 500, with the iPhone maker at 7.11% and the software and cloud heavyweight at 6.14%.
That’s the highest level of dominance that any two stocks have wielded in the broad market index since IBM and AT&T in 1978, Howard Silverblatt, senior index analyst at S&P Dow Jones Indices, told the Journal.
The growing influence of Apple and Microsoft comes as shares have rallied 23% and 14%, respectively, so far in 2023, rebounding from steep losses last year.
Tech stocks broadly have been seen as relatively safe bets in the stock market lately. In the immediate wake of the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank, tech stocks surged as investors cheered their limited exposure to the banking sector.
“While it sounds like [a] Twilight Zone comment to many investors, tech stocks have become the new safety trade with big tech names a major beneficiary of this dynamic,” Wedbush analyst Dan Ives said in a recent note.
But perhaps the strongest driver of technology stocks’ returns is the sharp decline in bond yields and expectations that the Fed will cut benchmark rates multiple times by the end of the year as it deals with the fallout from largest bank failure since 2008.