Apple, whether you like the company and its “ecosystem” or not, has been a leader in many ways. The iPhone moved us into the era of smartphones, choosing the direction and form that kind of technology would take. Before that, the iPod was a trendsetter in personal entertainment technology, and its offspring, iTunes, continues to be a massive market force for music and television.

Early on August 19, 2020, the tech giant hit another first: for a few hours, the company was worth more than $2 trillion, the highest stock value in the history of American companies. Apple (AAPL) finished the trading day slightly below that threshold, but it has grown steadily all year, so it can reasonably be expected to reach that value again in the next few days.

AAPL, which is currently worth approximately $465 a share, has grown nearly 60 percent this year, with lockdown and other COVID-19 concerns driving its market value up after a panic-driven shrinkage in March. The soft surge up to the $2 trillion mark was partially due to the announcement that Apple stock will be splitting at the end of August. The four-for-one split will bring the cost of a single share down to an estimated $116, back into the purchasing range of an average investor.

It was only two years ago, in August of 2018, that Apple’s market value reached $1 trillion. In March 2020, the company was again worth “only” $1 trillion, meaning this surge has only taken six months during a time when most of the economy is falling into a hard recession.

Investors are fond of Apple because of rising sales of its subscription services including Apple Music, iCloud, Apple TV+, and Apple Arcade. They also anticipate that the iPhone 12, to be launched soon, will have 5G connectivity, making it possible for the phone to access the most modern wireless technology.

Two other U.S. tech companies, Amazon and Microsoft, are in hot pursuit, both currently valued at or around $1.6 trillion and rising. If tech companies continue to evade the global recession, they too are likely to cross the $2 trillion mark this year.

Photo by Andrey Bayda /