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Apple dancing with Microsoft for most valuable company in the US crown

Apple CEO Tim Cook and an aerial view of Apple Park

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Apple's AI announcements at WWDC have sent its stock rising and it briefly knocked Microsoft off the top spot on Wednesday.

While Nvidia has become a third player in this game, it's been chiefly Microsoft and Apple that have vied for the title of most valuable company. Both firms have a market cap of over $3 trillion, and at times during the last year have been within $100 billion of each other.

Microsoft actually edged out Apple to get the top spot on January 11, 2024, only to lose that title two hours later. And then to regain it the next day.

But following its WWDC 2024 announcements, Apple's stock initially dipped, then rose again to hit a record high price. By the close of market on Tuesday, Apple's stock price was $207.15, a rise of 7.26% on the day, and already closing in on Microsoft.

For a period of time on Wednesday, it was ahead of Microsoft in valuation. By close of market on Wednesday, Apple's stock price was $215.04, putting it just millions of dollars behind Microsoft.

As a sign of just how much Apple has grown, at the launch of the iPad in 2010, Steve Jobs announced that the company was now worth more than $50 billion. That's sixty times less than today, but then as now, Apple repeatedly says it doesn't focus on the stock price.

"Apple is an over-50 billion dollar company," said Jobs at the iPad launch. "Now, I like to forget that because that's not how we think about Apple but it is pretty amazing."