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Apple Inc. (AAPL), Exxon Mobil Corporation (XOM) & The World’s 15 Biggest Companies

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In August 2011, when Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) founder and erstwhile CEO Steve Jobs resigned due to his ongoing health issues, the stakeholders of the company did not know that his successor, Tim Cook, would take the company to new heights. Within a span of one year, Cook helped Apple achieve the highest ever market capitalization that any company has ever achieved.

On August 20th 2012, shares of Apple closed at $ 665.15 with a market cap of $623.5 billion. Impressively, Apple had managed to double its market cap from $300 billion to $ 623.5 billion in just 19 months. At this point, the gap between the market cap of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and the second largest company, Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM), widened to more than $200 billion.

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Apple Inc. (AAPL)Things, however have changed since then, and now, Apple and Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) are neck and neck for the number one position. With a current market cap of over $400 billion, Exxon Mobil is not too far away to surpass the Cupertino tech giant, which currently stands at about $425 billion.

Though this is a point that often goes unnoticed, the fall in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s market cap over last six months can at least be partially attributed to tough competition from South Korean Electronic giant Samsung, which has a substantial market share in the smartphone and tablet domain. Other than competition from Samsung, availability of large-screen, cheap smartphones and tablets from China is also contributing to Apple’s misery.

Apple, however, is leaving no stone unturned to woo its customers and is experimenting with new launches and developing new applications. It has recently added a “Why you’ll Love iPad” section to its website and has also launched an application called “Find my friends” which is believed to be an effort to keep the customers engaged.

In a recent report published by the hit-or-miss DigiTimes, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is cutting down on orders for components used to manufacture iPad mini. The decrease as reported would be around 20% in the month of April and would continue throughout the quarter targeting to bring down the total shipment of iPad minis to the extent of 10 million units in Q2. The cut in orders, as reported, is part of an effort to reduce the supply of current-model iPad minis, so that Apple’s next-gen device can be accommodated, which is expected to hit the market in Q3.

With all of this in mind, it’s worth noting that in terms of total market capitalization, Apple still sits in the upper tier of publicly traded companies. While it’s difficult to know if growth, value, or even income investors will propel shares forward–we’re hoping for anything but the latter–it’s important to chronicle how the company compares to the rest of the titans.

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