2 min read

Big tech’s back to work blues

While Big Tech exchanged new year messages to staff for final pay slips to try tighten belts for a possible recession, it’s not all doom and gloom in 2023. Walmart lifted their minimum wage and the S&P 500 bounced up 6.5%. What other light could be peeping through the cracks?
Published on
February 1, 2023

Summer is s’posed to be our time to recharge with good vibes, good beer and enough solar energy to run a Tesla (TSLA) semi-truck. But if you’ve spent the last few weeks dodging raindrops, missing cancelled events or worrying about a potential beermageddon, the motivation to jump back into the same old work grind might be… low. Even Jacinda Ardern came back from her summer break, took one look at her inbox and thought ‘yeah, nah’. 🙅‍♀️

But before you start rage applying for new jobs this year, remember you won’t be alone. ✍️ Since the start of 2023 a growing number of big tech companies, including giants Google (GOOGL), Meta (META) and Microsoft (MSFT), have resolved to cut costs and lay off tens-of-thousands of staff. 🫵 Why so many jobs on the line? Many big tech companies binged on new staff during the Covid pandemic as demand boomed. However, with growth now slowing and threats of a recession on the horizon, companies have started to tighten their belts. It’s the big tech version of getting your hair done less to save money. So long fun blonde summer highlights! Helloooo Recession Brunette.

There are some rays of light shining through, though. While big tech’s busy killing off the ‘day in the life’ TikTok genre, retail giant Walmart (WMT) is boosting the pay for minimum wage employees to US$14 per hour, around a 17% increase. 🤑 The threat of recession isn’t holding back the S&P 500 index either. The Vanguard 500 Index Fund ETF (VOO) has bounced 6.5% so far in 2023. And there has been no Slacking over at enterprise software company Salesforce (CRM). The company has joined the list in laying off 10% of their workforce. But the involvement of a pair of activist investors has boosted the investor hopes that the company could see positive changes in the future, all of which is helping to push the Salesforce share price up 22% so far this year. 🌞

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