New York - On Monday, its surging stock
propelled the company's value to $623bn, beating the record for
market capitalization set by Microsoft Corp. in the heady days of the
Apple's stock has hit new highs
recently because of optimism around what is believed to be the
impending launch of the iPhone 5, and possibly a smaller, cheaper
Apple Inc. has been the world's most
valuable company since the end of last year. It's now worth 53% more
than No. 2 Exxon Mobil Corp.
Apple's stock hit $664.74 in midday
trading before retreating slightly to $663. That was $14.98, or 2.3%,
higher than Friday's close.
Microsoft's 1999 peak was $620.58bn,
according to Standard & Poor's.
The comparison to Microsoft does not
take inflation into account. In inflation-adjusted dollars, the
software giant was worth about $850bn on Dec. 30, 1999. Microsoft is
now worth $257bn.
Analysts believe Apple's stock has room
to grow. The average price target of 38 analysts polled by FactSet is
Apart from the iPhone and "mini
iPad," analysts are speculating that Apple plans to make a TV
set to complete its suite of consumer electronics products. Apple
usually doesn't comment on its future product plans until a few weeks
or days before a launch.
China's largest oil company,
PetroChina, was briefly worth $1 trillion after it listed on the
Shanghai stock exchange in 2007, but only based on its price on that
exchange. Its shares also trade in Hong Kong and on the New York
Stock Exchange. Based on trading there, its market capitalization
never went as high as $500bn.
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