Welcome to The Daily Intel, a roundup of exclusive news and analysis from S&P Global Market Intelligence, curated by our journalists.
Top five US stocks approach 20% of total S&P 500 market cap
The top five U.S. stocks by market capitalization — all tech companies — are approaching 20% of the total market value of the entire S&P 500, furthering a trend toward concentration of market wealth in the titans of the tech sector even as those companies face growing political pressure on issues such as privacy and antitrust. Apple Inc., Microsoft Corp., Alphabet Inc., Amazon.com Inc. and Facebook Inc. are worth a combined $4.9 trillion, with Apple the best-performing stock among the top five in 2019 with a gain of 86%, followed by Facebook (57%), Microsoft (55%), Alphabet (28%) and Amazon (23%).
Energy and Utilities
Independent oil, gas producers enjoying stock rebounds nobody can explain
Shares of Occidental Petroleum Corp. and other U.S. independent oil and gas producers, especially in West Texas' Permian Basin, are surging, but analysts have a hard time pinning the gains to any recognizable factors.
New direction in UK 'solar race' as developers eye unsubsidized plants
Aggressive development backed by generous subsidies gave the U.K. the third-largest installed solar generation capacity in Europe until government help dried up. Now technology advancements are making solar development on the islands potentially viable again, this time without the subsidies.
For many, mutual bank conversions are a precursor to a sale
Just 28% of the mutual banks that converted to public stock companies between 2000 and 2016 are without an acquirer.
Frustration mounts in UK retail sector over failing businesses' insolvency abuse
Retail landlords in the U.K. are taking a hit on company voluntary agreements, under which retailers facing ruin can negotiate new terms with creditors, including reduced rent as property owners get outvoted by bigger creditors.