Behind the popularity of new economy stocks

A WeWork location near New York City’s Times Square. WeWork was recently reported to be considering a rescue valuation of US$8 billion (S$10.9 billion) following a failed initial public offering, a whopping US$39 billion discount to its last valuation in
A WeWork location near New York City’s Times Square. WeWork was recently reported to be considering a rescue valuation of US$8 billion (S$10.9 billion) following a failed initial public offering, a whopping US$39 billion discount to its last valuation in a round invested into by SoftBank in January. PHOTO: NYTIMES
Grab has created waves in the region as an alternative transport provider connecting private car drivers with passengers, while Airbnb has created a large new market linking private residential landlords with short-term renters from around the world.
Grab has created waves in the region as an alternative transport provider connecting private car drivers with passengers, while Airbnb has created a large new market linking private residential landlords with short-term renters from around the world. PHOTOS: REUTERS
Grab has created waves in the region as an alternative transport provider connecting private car drivers with passengers, while Airbnb has created a large new market linking private residential landlords with short-term renters from around the world.
Grab has created waves in the region as an alternative transport provider connecting private car drivers with passengers, while Airbnb has created a large new market linking private residential landlords with short-term renters from around the world. PHOTOS: REUTERS

The rise of the new economy will continue to have a profound impact on the lives of investors, but putting money in such stocks may not yield the returns many hope for.

WeWork, Snap, Airbnb, Grab. Most of these names are familiar to us because of the impact they have had on our lives - from renting a swanky co-working space to taking fancy selfies, letting our apartments to holiday-goers and booking a ride-sharing car.

They have also been a major focus for investors around the world because of eye-popping valuations achieved in private markets, some in public markets, while many others are expected to come into the market soon.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on November 03, 2019, with the headline 'Behind the popularity of new economy stocks'. Print Edition | Subscribe