Daily Archives: October 1, 2008

Richard Waters

ibm-three-day-chart.pngIBM has been the stand-out among big technology stocks this year, the company which has shown itself best positioned to withstand the storm spreading from the financial markets. So it’s a mark of Wall Street’s bleak new pessimism that even Big Blue is taking a pasting this week (according to Reuters, there has been speculation that IBM is about to cut its financial projections: when investors are in a mood to sell, that kind of rumour is like a spark to dry kindling.)

The deflation in tech has come in distinct stages. The eye-catching drop this year in the shares of companies like Google, Research in Motion and Apple has been mainly the result of compressed multiples: confidence in stretched valuation levels tends to evaporate at times like this. That took a new twist this week, with fears about weaker consumer spending taking a dent out of Apple directly. 

Robin Harding

The joys of tape - Getty ImagesObsolete technologies such as film never die, they just go back to the lab to reincarnate in a new application.

Films and tapes are rapidly going the way of the dodo: audio tape was wiped out by compact disc, DVD has all but finished the video cassette, and digital cameras are hunting down the last few surviving models that use film. But the businesses that perfected magnetic tape and photographic film are still around – although sometimes in reduced circumstances – and they are busy thinking of new ways to use the stuff.