UPDATED with closing price: Apple’s stock price rose in early morning trading Wednesday, eclipsing a benchmark that made it the first U.S. company to reach $2 trillion in market capitalization. The milestone comes after it passed the $1 trillion mark in August 2018.
The company has been leading the tech sector’s rise against the tide of most other companies in the coronavirus-impacted economy. To reach the $2T cap today, its share price needed to hit $467.77, which it did just after 11 a.m. ET. Shares neared their 52-week high later in the day but the stock closed up fractionally at 462.83, as the broader market also cooled, erasing earlier gains paced by the previous day’s record closing high for the S&P 500.
Apple’s market cap as of close of market is now $1.979 trillion.
Market watchers have been expecting the $2T milestone, and shares had jumped last week after a report that the company will introduce bundles of its TV, music, video game, iCloud and other services.
Two years ago this month, Apple became the first U.S. public company to hit $1 trillion in value. At the end of last month, it became the world’s most valuable company, dethroning state oil giant Saudi Aramco. That came a day after its Q3 earnings results, which flew past Wall Street forecasts by delivering revenue of $59.7 billion and earnings per diluted share of $2.58 billion.
The tech giant has been making services a strategic focus as it shifts away from hardware, which has more economic sensitivity and less reliable profit margins. After more than a decade as a standard-bearer, the iPhone posted sales declines for the first time in 2018, though they have since stabilized. In the services division, gross margins topped 67% in the quarter ending June 30, with total revenue of $13.2 billion. Apple now has 550 million paying subscribers to its various services, well within reach of its goal of 600 million by the end of 2020.
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