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Apple became the first company ever to close a trading day with a $3 trillion valuation on Friday – hitting the milestone as investors look ahead to the highly-scrutinized releases like the iPhone 15 and the Vision Pro mixed-reality headset.
The California-based tech giant’s stock rose more than 2% to $193.97 per share at the closing bell on Friday after finishing at a record high in each of its previous two trading sessions. Apple’s stock surge this year has increased its market cap by roughly $1 trillion.
Apple previously became the first company in history to hit the $3 trillion mark in intraday trading on Jan. 3, 2022. But the shares ended up closing below the threshold and never crossed it again as the Ukraine invasion and rate hikes from the Federal Reserve began to slam tech stocks.
Apple was the first company to cross $1 trillion in market capitalization in August 2018. Two years later, it became the first company to blow past the $2 trillion mark.
At $3 trillion, Apple’s market value makes it larger than Alphabet and Amazon combined. It’s also worth nearly $500 billion more than its nearest rival, Microsoft, and eclipses the GDP of four of the world’s 10 biggest economies: France, Russia, Canada and Italy.
Apple shares have swelled more than 55% so far this year, leading a broader recovery among battered tech stocks as investors shake off concerns about the Fed and the economic outlook.
Wedbush analyst Daniel Ives, a noted Apple bull, has set a $220 price target for shares and argued in a note this week that a “fair valuation could be in the $3.5 trillion range with a bull case $4 trillion valuation” by fiscal 2025.
“The Apple bears and skeptics continue to scratch their heads as many have called for Apple’s ‘broken growth story’ this year in a tougher backdrop, to which we firmly believe the exact opposite has happened with Cupertino heading into a massive renaissance of growth over the next 12 to 18 months,” Ives said in a note to clients.
Stock growth has continued unabated even after Apple’s CFO Luca Maestri warned in May that the company expected its revenue to sink by 3% this quarter. The iPhone 15 is slated for release this fall ahead of the crucial holiday season.
Apple faced a lukewarm reception at its unveiling of the Vision Pro headset earlier this month, which marks the first major product launch in Cupertino in more than a decade.
CEO Tim Cook has referred to the headset as a “spatial computer” and an innovation on par with the launch of the first iPhone or Mac computer. Resembling a set of large ski goggles, the Vision Pro allows users to interact with apps with their hands and voice rather than a mouse or controller.
Critics have taken aim at the Vision Pro’s whopping $3,499 price tag ahead of release to the public early next year and its limited battery life, among other points of contention.
Attendees of Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference openly groaned when executives announced the price and release date.
Former Apple executive Tony Fadell skeptically quipped that the company had “jumped the shark” with the headset.
Meanwhile, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, whose company is set to release its own updated mixed-reality headset later this year for just $499, slammed Apple’s design for making people sit “on a couch by themself” instead of being active.
So far, Apple has largely avoided implementing the sort of austerity measures seen at rival firms such as Amazon, Google, and Meta – each of which has carried out significant rounds of layoffs and other cost-cutting measures.