Let's take just a moment out of our Fridays to recognize something amazing - that there is a new largest company in the history of the world, emerging during an economic climate charitably described as middling. That's right - Apple Inc (née Apple Computer), currently trading at 667, boasts the largest market capitalization of all time at $624.9 Billion. The previous leader? Microsoft, who touched $616.3 billion back in December 1999.
That's right - at the inflated valuations of the late 90s, Microsoft had hit the record with a massive Price to Earning Ratio, versus a sane valuation of under 16 for Apple today. That's also right - Apple took the crown at a sane valuation.
Of Steve Jobs and Tim Cook
Even more impressive? The company did it without founder Steve Jobs, who died in October of 2011. Tim Cook, Apple's current CEO, has taken Apple higher than the visionary founder ever did - finally vanquishing pretty much the only investing record that Apple didn't already hold.
It did all of this without even dominating the market which it was founded in - computers. In fact, it doesn't dominate the phone market either. It's the market leader in both portable music players and tablets, but not as overwhelmingly as you might imagine. Hard to point to other companies that have been able to do what Apple has done - Bravo. The next biggest company, Exxon-Mobil, has about $200 billion less in market capitalization.
So what's next? A stock price of 1000 or a market cap of $1 Trillion? Tech bubble 2.0/Silicon Valley bubble 3.0? Sound off in the comments!