“It’s always tempting at a time of upheaval to imagine that society will be changed forever,” says Seth Klarman, CEO of the Baupost Group, in a letter to Limited Partners. “In the depths of the 2008/2009 financial crisis it was easy to imagine investor behaviour would change forever because investors would have been permanently chastened, but Jeremy Grantham at the time predicted that any change would not be long-lived, noting that investors ‘will learn an enormous amount in a very short time, quite a bit in the medium term and absolutely nothing in the long term.’ And that’s exactly what happened.”

That might happen again. But it doesn’t rule out the need for investors to try to figure out what might permanently change as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and what might quickly return to normal. The most profound and lasting effect will probably be on technology. In the past few months, companies have gone from experimenting with technology to being forced to start adopting ...

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