Just a little over six months after Apple achieved the distinction of becoming both the most valuable U.S. company and the first of the nation's firms to achieve a trillion dollar valuation, the Cupertino-based giant was once again able to enjoy a brief moment at the top today, before ultimately being toppled by Microsoft.
In the months since those August highs, waning demand for iPhones and investors' apprehension over the possibility of market saturation have caused the company's market cap to shrink significantly. This allowed Amazon and, ultimately, Microsoft to swoop in and take the crown from Apple.
Both Apple and Microsoft's earnings reports for last quarter were met with a positive reception on Wall Street, and caused modest increases in the share prices of each. For a few moments, Apple was even able to edge ahead of Microsoft to regain the title of being the most valuable American company, though the iPhone maker ultimately had to succumb to the Redmond giant, which holds a market cap of $810 billion at the time of writing.
While it may not have been able to best one of its rivals, Apple's good fortunes today did allow it to steal the number two spot from Amazon, which had earned the distinction of leading the pack for the first time ever back in January. It has now fallen to third place, with a valuation of $801 billion compared to Apple's $806 billion. Undoubtedly, the three companies - alongside Alphabet ($771 billion) - will be trading places for the top spot many more times in the coming months.