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Apple reaches new landmark with $1 trillion valuation

Shares of Apple hit $207.91 in afternoon trading on Wall Street.

Image: Fox

APPLE HIT ANOTHER milestone today, becoming the first private-sector company to surpass $1 trillion in market value.

Shares of Apple hit $207.91 in afternoon trading on Wall Street, allowing it to hit the magic number two days after the California tech giant reported strong quarterly earnings.

The landmark is the latest victory for Tim Cook, who faced scepticism when he took over as chief executive in 2011 from ailing iconic co-founder Steve Jobs.

Jobs, who founded Apple in a Silicon Valley garage in 1976 with Steve Wozniak and built it into a global powerhouse, died in October 2011.

After the death of Jobs, analysts and other industry watchers wondered whether the company would lose its ability to create buzz for “the next big thing”.

But Cook has gradually won accolades from investors by pumping out a series of solid financial results and spreading Apple’s products to China and other foreign markets.

As with other landmarks — such as the Dow crossing 25,000 points for the first time — the Apple record is significant because of its resonance beyond the financial universe.

“The $1 trillion mark is more psychological, and sends a message of growth and size into the market,” said Howard Silverblatt, senior index analyst at S&P Dow Jones Indices.

Many financial insiders, however, view the record as a non-event.

“There’s no real excitement on the trading desk,” said Karl Haeling of LBBW. “It’s one of those things that does not mean anything by itself… it’s more a testimony of the importance of Apple on the market.”

Apple is the first private sector company to reach this level. State oil company PetroChina briefly broke the $1 trillion barrier in 2007 during its initial public offering, but has since dropped back down.

US tech companies have cemented their position in the broader market, now making up the top five most valuable enterprises based on share prices.

Behind Apple are Amazon, Google parent Alphabet, Microsoft and Facebook.

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