Apple’s blowout numbers this week got tongues wagging about the tech juggernaut. David Wilson at Bloomberg charts the answer to the question as to when Apple Inc. will overtake Exxon Mobil as the world’s most valuable public company. Apple is currently at ~$358.7 billion, a mere 13%behind Exxon Mobil at $410.3 billion.

Short answer: At the current pace, less than 12 months.

That assumes analysts’ share-price estimates are on target; so far, they have been too low in terms of earnings and revenue forecasts.


Apple versus Exxon Mobil 2008-2012

(Projected Market Value panel/Actual Value lower panel)

Data Source: Average Price Forecast, Bloomberg survey of analysts


Apple Exceeding Exxon Foreseen by Analysts: Chart of the Day
By David Wilson and Michael Tsang
Bloomberg 2011-07-21 04:01:00.9 GMT

Category: Analysts, Trading, Valuation

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

18 Responses to “When Will Apple Be Bigger than ExxonMobil?”

  1. James says:

    It will be very interesting to see what actually happens . . . 12 months seems like a long time in the current investment environment.

  2. constantnormal says:

    So long as AAPL’s PE multiple keeps shrinking in concert with their earnings growth, this is going to be a delayed day …

  3. constantnormal says:

    … it would be nice to see a chart of AAPL’s PE multiple superimposed on the one above … and nicer still if I could manage to complete a thought before clicking “submit comment” …

  4. socaljoe says:

    A common misperception… price does not equal value… just because the marginal share traded at $387 does not mean that every share can be sold for that price. Fundamental measures, such as book value or earnings, are a better measure of value.

  5. Mike in Nola says:

    The bigger question is when will Apple’s earnings surpass the combined GDP’s of the US and China. Some seem to think it is inevitable.

  6. [...] The Big Picture – When Will Apple Be Bigger than ExxonMobil [...]

  7. NoKidding says:

    I think the time to short AAPL is approaching. I will personally do it when the next negative GDP quarter is approaching.

    Apple makes the best product in nearly all of the categories it competes in, the devices are not going away, the company seems to be well managed, they are investing in the future, they have not been reduced to competing n price…. etc etc. For all those reasons Apple is a good company to buy, own and hold onto.

    But that price!!

  8. Mike in Nola says:

    And when will Apple be invited to the G8?

  9. constantnormal says:

    @Mike in Nola

    “The bigger question is when will Apple’s earnings surpass the combined GDP’s of the US and China.”

    Well, THAT can’t happen, as all the revenue comes mainly from the US and China (soon to be Brasil as well), with lesser amounts of revenue coming from Ireland and a number of other countries. So unless they manage to have it all taxed in some zero-tax nation (like CAT or GE or a bazillion other US corporations do), it will accrue to the GDPs of the countries where it is generated ….

    But just think of what they could achieve if they were to apply that umpity-billion-dollar hoard of cash to that favorite pastime of Bananamerican companies — purchasing senators, congress-critters, and presidents …


  10. scottinnj says:

    My guess is the day they announce Jobs is back on the job (no pun intended).

  11. MikeW says:

    No offense to Apple fans, but if I had to place a bet on whether AAPL or XOM will have a larger capitalization a full decade from now, I’d pick the latter.

    These high-flying tech stocks have a way of becoming dead money after they peak.

  12. Rouleur says:

    …uuhhhh – XOM is quite different than AAPL, one is an oil/energy producing company and one is a producer of electronic communication devices…hard to compare, no?…which one has greater “hard” assets, which one has greater value, which one is a better investment?…interesting proposition…hard assets or people-power-intellectual assets…deflation-inflation…

  13. I suppose if AAPL started buying politicians they would then start running smoother. No blue screens of death like we have now

  14. victor says:

    XOM, a well managed, competitive corporation in a VERY competitive space is in the unloved business of providing essential products such as: fuel for transport (auto’s, trucks, boat/ships, aircraft), electricity, heating in the winter, A/C in the summer, food via fertilizers and a myriad of products via petrochemicals.

    AAPL, a well managed company, without serious competition is in the very loved business of providing non essential beautiful products. My vote goes to the boring, unloved, regularly bashed in show trials by our beloved Congress every time the price of gas exceeds $4/gal, the venerable, stodgy XOM, ex Standard Oil of New Jersey.


    BR: Apple does not have serious competition . . . ?

  15. [...] When will Apple ($AAPL) exceed ExxonMobil ($XOM) in market cap?  (Big Picture) [...]

  16. ashpelham2 says:

    Apple looks like the IBM of 50 years ago. They are not just a trendy, hot product of the moment firm. They are breeding success in their products and services, and lately, they’ve been on a roll. They re-invented themselves, in some way, after nearly dying back in the 90′s. Still, even the big boys like Apple fall on hard times. Again, see IBM. There will come a day when some key business line that they engage in will fall out of favor, and they will need to decide what to do with this key sector, as it becomes a drag on earnings. It’s just the lifespan of companies. As the cloud becomes more integrated and accepted, how long will hard drive or even flash drive – based devices be necessary. At some point, everything becomes a network device.

    When the auto manufacturers embrace networking in ALL OF THEIR CARS, not just as an option, then listening to the old AM/FM stations will become a thing of the past.

  17. Joe Friday says:

    When Will Apple Be Bigger than ExxonMobil?


    Do we count sales by the fake stores and fake employees, or not ?