Remember all the hand-wringing and analyst prognostications about gloom and doom at Apple if and when CEO Steve Jobs ever stepped down? Apparently the folks on Wall Street don’t, because Apple’s stock is flying high since Tim Cook stepped into the CEO shoes nearly a month ago.
As most of you have no doubt seen by now, it has been a wild ride in the stock markets across the globe this week. Despite the volatility, Apple did have a bright spot in that it was able to close today as the world's most valuable company, overtaking Exxon Mobil.
You would think that with Apple riding high in the stock market, investors would be breaking out the champagne and celebrating. Unfortunately, with the holiday quarter financial results coming on Tuesday, the sound of grumbling is what Cupertino is hearing instead.
You’ve read about them here and many other places: The “channel checks” conducted by research analysts to prognosticate what Apple may be doing in the future. Now, the questionable practice has fallen under the watchful eye of the Federal government.
Microsoft confirmed last Friday that CEO Steve Ballmer plans to sell nearly one-fifth of his shares of the company, valued at $1.3 billion. Meanwhile, the company’s Kinect gaming technology apparently went to Apple first, but the creator of the technology found them difficult to work with.
Now for some other business news. You may have caught word that yesterday Apple announced that it "expects to experience decreases in its gross margin percentage in future periods, as compared to levels achieved during 2010," due to a mix of new products that cost the company more to produce and an expectation that product components and other costs will rise. On the flip side though, the company also saw a hiring boost in their annual report that was filed with the SEC.
Speaking of the sky being the limit, Apple's finances reached a new milestone today. It opened for trading today at over $300 a share, rising 25% since late August, and a whopping 42% since the start of the year.