Microsoft briefly toppled Apple as the most valuable company in the world

Jeannie Matthews
November 28, 2018

Microsoft has overtaken Apple as the world's most valuable company. Apple shares pared early declines to finish 1.35 percent higher. Apple's market cap was slightly less. This marks a momentous event for the Bill Gates-founded company, since the last time that it was hailed as more valuable than Tim Cook's business was in 2010, as per Business Insider. Even though Microsoft isn't immune to struggles in the technology sector, it still held up much better than Apple since it only fell 9 percent compared to Apple's 25 percent, as pointed out by Bloomberg. Apple was even lauded for being the first USA company to have a $1 trillion valuation just this past August. Its smartphone business has slowed down due to a very complicated list of factors but has tried to compensate revenue by raising the retail price of iPhones every year while also focusing on selling subscription based services like iCloud and Apple Music.

Both companies' market capitalisations were calculated using outstanding shares reported in their most recent 10-Q filings.

Microsoft has lost some public mindshare to Apple in the past few years as the Android vs iOS battle became as important at the Mac vs PC one, and Microsoft failed to capture the mobile market.

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Below is a look at the spread between the two market caps going back to 1986.

Obviously, the value of major tech companies like Microsoft and Apple changes all the time, and Microsoft probably won't retain its position for long (Apple has already retaken its place as of writing). That would put it below both, now valued about US$770 billion, and Google-parent Alphabet Inc., which has a market cap of about US$730 billion.

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