The title of the world's most valuable company no longer belongs to Apple, and the crown hasn't passed back to previous record holders Microsoft, Google, or Amazon. Saudi Aramco, the world's largest crude oil exporter, took the top spot from the tech giant. It was ranked 4th most valuable company last year, and is 94% owned by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (which weirdly also owns most of SNK).
According to a report in the Financial Times (opens in new tab), Apple lost its position despite being the first company to hit a $3 trillion market value back in January.
Apple has sustained losses of 19%, and its share prices fell to $146 (the lowest since November 2021) after hitting the $3 trillion mark. Currently, Apple is valued at $2.37 trillion. Aramco managed to squeak past it at a $2.43 trillion market value. Apple is still the most valuable US company, with Microsoft coming in at $1.95 trillion.
Apple CEO Tim Cook blames supply shortages and Covid-related lockdowns in China for costing the company at least $8 billion this quarter alone. Despite those challenges, Apple still managed to have its third best quarter ever in revenue.
Shares for Saudi Aramco have risen nearly 30% since the new year. Skyrocketing oil prices have only helped the Crown-owned energy company: this quarter alone has seen an 82% increase in profits from last year at around $40 billion dollars.
The current price of a barrel of oil is $139, the highest in 14 years, and countries that have turned away from Russian oil since its invasion of Ukraine are increasingly buying from Saudi Arabia.
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It makes sense to see tech companies take a hit while energy companies score record profits, especially during these turbulent times. But Apple may easily retake its crown once supply chain issues are resolved.
"You can't compare Apple to Saudi Aramco in terms of their businesses or fundamentals, but the outlook for the commodity space has improved," James Meyer, CIO at Tower Bridge Advisors, told Bloomberg. "They're the beneficiaries of inflation and tight supply."