Microsoft Becomes Most Valuable US Company Amid Apple’s Declining Share Price

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While Apple maintained a healthy lead in size over the past few years, the company's recent swan dive has left it only marginally larger than Microsoft. In late-afternoon trading, Apple's value was $822.9 billion, about $7 billion above Microsoft's.

Apple's market cap hovered around US$823.66 billion as of 3:15 pm in NY, while Microsoft's stood at US$823.90 billion, although the two spent much of Monday afternoon jockeying for the top seat in intraday action.

Apple's market capitalisation overtook Microsoft's in 2010 as the maker of Windows software struggled with slow demand for personal computers, due in part to the explosion of smartphones driven by the iPhone. Apple was even lauded for being the first US company to have a $1 trillion valuation just this past August.

Apple has slid amid growing concerns that the company is seeing weak demand for iPhones, by far its biggest product line.

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"Shares in Microsoft opened at $106.27, pushing its market capitalization to $815.75 billion, elbowing past Apple's opening value of $813.88 billion". Shares of Apple rose 0.9 percent, erasing an earlier decline, while Microsoft climbed 3.2 percent.

Apple has been on a staggering trajectory in the decade since the iPhone was released, and in the process made Microsoft look like a technology company of the past. When he took over in 2014, the executive said he wanted to focus on subscription-based business and the cloud.

According to Rich Ross, a technical analyst at Evercore ISI, Apple's stock "has another 18 percent downside", which could take the stock to $140. "It is not bullish when the biggest stock in the world is in "falling knife" mode", he wrote to clients Monday. This number exceeded Apple's market cap of $812.60 billion. That would put it below both Amazon.com, 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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