Apple becomes the first $3 trillion company

An Apple a day is supposed to keep the doctor away and Apple shares are certainly doing their part to keep investor portfolios healthy in 2022.

On Monday 3 January, the US tech giant became the first publicly traded company to have a stock market value of over $3 trillion – just three and a half years after it became the first $1 trillion company and just a day before Blackberry stopped running support for its classic devices.

Apple Inc had a humble beginning – it was launched from founder Steve Job’s garage in 1976. The firm went public in 1980 with shares priced at $22, but it was after the launch of the iPhone that it really took off.

According to Reuters, Apple’s shares have risen more than 5,800% since co-founder and former Chief Executive Steve Jobs unveiled the first iPhone in January 2007, far outpacing the S&P 500’s gain of about 230% during the same period. Last year the company’s share price rose 34%*.

While other tech companies surpassed Apple’s performance in 2021 (the share price of Nvidia, the chipmaker, rose more than 125%*, Alphabet – Google’s parent – saw its share price rise more than 65%* and both Microsoft and Tesla shares gained more than 50%*, for example), they have yet to reach such dizzy-heights in valuation.

Microsoft’s stock market value currently stands at about $2.5 trillion, while Alphabet is around £1.9 trillion, Amazon around $1.7 trillion and Nvidia $700 billion*.

We take a look at four Elite Rated funds with Apple in their top ten holdings:

AXA Framlington Global Technology – 7.9%**
This is an unconstrained multi-cap fund whose investment universe includes all traditional technology sub-sectors as well as companies where technology is providing a significant competitive advantage. Manager Jeremy Gleeson has been running this fund since 2007 and has been specialising in technology stocks since 1998. He spoke to us recently on this podcast:

Artemis US Extended Alpha – 6.7%**
Manager William Warren has co-managed this fund since launch in 2014 and has been lead manager since October 2019. The fund invests in a traditional portfolio of around 60-110 ‘long’ US stocks (where the manager expects a company’s share price to rise), combined with a portfolio of 70-110 ‘short’ positions (where he aims to make money from an anticipated fall in a company’s share price).

AXA Framlington American Growth – 5.32%**
Innovation, unique brands and intellectual property are the sort of features that can give companies a competitive advantage, helping them grow into market leaders. These kinds of stories are what manager Steve Kelly and his team hope to uncover in their quest for growth stocks in the US market. This fund performs particularly well when the US market is in a growth phase.

Brown Advisory US Flexible Equity – 4.2%**
This fund has been run by Maneesh Bajaj since 2017. Its strategy is unconstrained, meaning Maneesh is free to select companies from across the market cap spectrum. This has enabled the fund to become one of the few to consistently outperform the S&P 500 over long periods of time. Maneesh spoke to us in November 2021 about some of the other holdings in the fund:

*Source: Reuters, 3 January 2022
**Source: fund factsheet, 30 November 2021

This article is provided for information only. The views of the author and any people quoted are their own and do not constitute financial advice. The content is not intended to be a personal recommendation to buy or sell any fund or trust, or to adopt a particular investment strategy. However, the knowledge that professional analysts have analysed a fund or trust in depth before assigning them a rating can be a valuable additional filter for anyone looking to make their own decisions. Past performance is not a reliable guide to future returns. Market and exchange-rate movements may cause the value of investments to go down as well as up. Yields will fluctuate and so income from investments is variable and not guaranteed. You may not get back the amount originally invested. Tax treatment depends of your individual circumstances and may be subject to change in the future. If you are unsure about the suitability of any investment you should seek professional advice. Whilst FundCalibre provides product information, guidance and fund research we cannot know which of these products or funds, if any, are suitable for your particular circumstances and must leave that judgement to you. Before you make any investment decision, make sure you’re comfortable and fully understand the risks. Further information can be found on Elite Rated funds by simply clicking on the name highlighted in the article.