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Microsoft tops Apple as world’s most valuable public company

Apple CEO Tim Cook, left, and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.

Reuters

Microsoft ended Friday’s U.S. trading session as the most valuable publicly traded company, surpassing Apple after briefly topping the iPhone maker during intraday trading Thursday.

Shares of Microsoft climbed more than 3% for the week, bringing the company’s market cap to $2.89 trillion, while Apple’s stock dropped by over 3%, lowering its valuation to $2.87 trillion.

Redburn Atlantic Equities analyst James Cordwell downgraded Apple to neutral from buy on Wednesday, citing “little room for upside over the next few years” in iPhone growth and an “anticipated underwhelming March quarter.”

Apple said Thursday that former Vice President Al Gore will retire from the company’s board next month after serving as a director since 2003.

Microsoft, meanwhile, got a vote of confidence Thursday after discussing its artificial intelligence capabilities to developers at an event in San Francisco. Piper Sandler analysts told clients in a note that they were “encouraged by the momentum around the most mature AI products” and mentioned that GitHub website traffic has accelerated year over year for three months in a row. The analysts have the equivalent of a buy rating on Microsoft shares.

Apple had been the most valuable public company for over a year, following brief periods when that distinction was held by Saudi Aramco and Microsoft.

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