At the start of the year, China's largest technology companies known as the BATs, or Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent, looked unstoppable. Things continued to go very well for the big three throughout the first half of the year, with all of the firms' share share prices hitting record highs.
But since the summer, investors in the BATs have been tearing their hair out as stock prices began to fall, ruining the decent start to 2018. Collectively, the BATs have lost around $165 billion in value year-to-date, each for their own reasons.
U.S.-listed Alibaba and Baidu have been caught up in the broader sell-off in Chinese stocks resulting from weak sentiment because of the U.S.-China trade war.
Tencent, meanwhile, has been hit by regulatory woes. The Chinese government has raised concerns about eye problems in the world's second-largest economy and cited video games as one of the causes. Beijing suggested slowing down approvals of new games. Tencent makes a huge amount of money from games and concerns over the future of this part of its business have weighed on its stock.
But looking beyond the trade war rhetoric and short term problems, the BATs certainly have enough firepower to have market leadership. They also pose a major challenge to major U.S. tech names known as the FANGs or Facebook, Amazon, Netflix and Alphabet, the parent company of Google.