Apple's market value surged by $190.9 billion on Thursday, the biggest ever for a US-listed company, according to Bloomberg data, driven by investors' optimism after data showed US inflation eased to the lowest since January and set off a furious risk-on rally.
Wall Street stocks recorded their best performance since 2020 overnight after a smaller-than-expected rise in US consumer prices fueled optimism that the Federal Reserve will slow its aggressive pace of interest rate hikes.
Thursday's stocks surge fueled a record market value gain for Apple, now at $2.34 trillion market capitalisation (market cap) following Thursday's 8.8 per cent increase and accounts for four of the top five biggest daily increases.
Bloomberg data showed that the surge in Apple's stock exceeded Amazon's $190.8 billion gain in February, adding to the company's market cap, which was already worth more than fellow giants Alphabet, Amazon and Meta combined.
Indeed, according to a separate report based on data from Yahoo Finance last week, Apple's market value was $2.307 trillion, making it more valuable than contemporaries Alphabet, Amazon, and Meta combined.
Yahoo Finance data back then showed the combined market capitalisation of those three largest IT companies was $2.306 trillion, with Google parent Alphabet's valued at $1.126 trillion, Amazon's at $939.78 billion and Facebook parent Meta's at $240.07 billion.
That reflected contrasting earnings results for those firms.
While Apple reported better-than-expected earnings, Alphabet, Amazon and Meta's earnings were weak, resulting in a sharp drop in their shares, wiping out billions from their market values, and pushing Amazon out of the club of companies with trillion-dollar market caps.
Still, Apple's stock is down about 17 per cent for the year, underscoring the sharp comedown in technology shares this year.
According to Market Watch, despite Apple's latest surge, the disparity highlights the year's dramatic decline in technology share prices.
At the end of 2021, Apple had a market value of $2.913 trillion, according to Dow Jones Market Data. At that time, the combined value of Alphabet, Amazon, and Meta was $4.410 trillion.
That skepticism is driven by events this year when such joy has been deflated throughout 2022 and there are reasons to be concerned this time too.
Investors have suffered losses this year as stocks made repeated recoveries only to fall back to lower lows when bear market rallies fizzled.