LOS ANGELES – For the first time in the long history of the dueling computer companies, Apple Inc.’s market capitalization passed that of rival Microsoft Corp. on Wednesday, making Apple the most valuable technology company in the world.
Apple shares closed at $244.18, giving it a market cap of $222.6 billion, compared with Microsoft, which has a total stock value of $219.4 billion.
Apple’s stock, which has repeatedly reached record highs in recent months, has risen nearly 16 percent since the beginning of the year, while Microsoft’s has dropped almost 18 percent.
During the last decade, in which it released a series of hit products such as the iPod and iPhone, Apple’s stock has soared nearly 1,000 percent. Microsoft, meanwhile, has seen its stock price remain relatively stagnant.
“It’s more than just Mac versus PC,” said Yair Reiner, an analyst at Oppenheimer & Co. Inc. “The market sees Apple as an engine of innovation and growth, but with Microsoft, the vast majority of its profits come from products that have been in the market for a long time.”
“Microsoft has been the workhorse of the PC revolution, but it’s seems as though that horse is running out of new tricks.”