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Apple ends lower as $3trn market value proves elusive

Its share price has surged throughout 2021.
Image: Mark Abramson/Bloomberg

Apple Inc. shares fell on Monday, with the iPhone maker retreating in the wake of a recent advance that brought it within striking distance of what would be a historic $3 trillion market valuation.

The stock closed down 2.1% at $175.74. This was Apple’s biggest one-day percentage loss since the broad market selloff on Nov. 26, and it resulted in a market capitalisation of $2.88 trillion. The drop came during a broadly negative session for U.S. equities, with large-cap technology and internet stocks among the day’s notable decliners. Among other stocks, Amazon.com Inc. fell 1.5%, Alphabet Inc. lost 1.5%, and Nvidia Corp. sank 6.8%, the most since March.

The weakness came as investors looked ahead to a number of key central bank decisions, notably the U.S. Federal Reserve, which is expected to pivot toward a more hawkish stance on Wednesday.

Despite the day’s decline, Apple remains a notable outperformer of late. Since the start of October, the stock has gained about 24%, more than double the Nasdaq 100 index’s gain of 9.5%.

Apple’s recent outperformance has come as analysts bet it will continue to see strong growth going forward. Earlier, JPMorgan Chase & Co. raised its price target on Apple shares to the highest among Wall Street analysts, touting the potential of its iPhone SE 5G model. CFRA also raised its target on Monday, writing that consensus expectations for Apple “likely appear too conservative.”

The company’s share price has surged throughout 2021, leaving it up more than 200% since Covid first sent the world into lockdown early last year and underlined the centrality of technology for work, education, entertainment and keeping connected. These are all markets that Apple touches through its hardware, software and media services, and this strength has contributed to it being on track to be the first company in history to hit $3 trillion, just 16 months after it first crossed the $2 trillion mark.

© 2021 Bloomberg L.P.

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