Tallahassee Journal

Apple first U.S. company worth $700B

Apple first U.S. company worth $700B

Apple– one of the stocks analysts are calling a screaming buy – added to its already-massive list of financial records Tuesday when it became the first U.S. company worth more than $700 billion. Shares of the gadget maker rose $2.29, or 1.9%, to $122.02 Tuesday — putting an exclamation point on a breathtaking 60% rise in the stock during the past year.mw-630-apple-china-630w

A giant move like that on a massive company like Apple makes for an earth-shattering valuation. At $710.7 billion Apple is worth nearly twice as much as oil giant Exxon Mobil, the second most valuable company at $385.4 billion. “It shouldn’t be surprising that record breaking market (valuations) follow record-breaking earnings,” says Walter Piecyk, analyst at BTIG. Apple earned profit of more than $18 billion in the fourth quarter – more than any other public company has earned in three months, says S&P Dow Jones Indices.

Apple is the first company in U.S. history to close with a value of $700 billion or more, according to data from S&P Capital IQ and S&P Dow Jones Indices. Microsoft was the first to close above $600 billion in 2000. Apple made a run at $700 billion before and briefly crossed above, but fell back. (Market value is the company’s stock price multiplied by it’s outstanding shares — 5.82 billion shares times $122.02 in Apple’s case.)

It’s ironic that Apple is named after a fruit associated with the discovery of gravity, considering the way the stock keeps seeming to defy the force itself. Apple first broke the $600 billion market value barrier on Aug. 17, 2012, says S&P Capital IQ. That was just 170 calendar days after Apple broke the $500 billion barrier on Feb. 29, 2012. It had cracked that $500 billion barrier just 35 days after closing over $400 billion