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Microsoft just overtook Exxon Mobil

This photo taken with a fisheye lens on July 3, 2014 shows Microsoft Corp. signage outside the Microsoft Visitor Center in Redmond, Wash. Microsoft on Thursday, July 17, 2014 announced it will lay off up to 18,000 workers over the next year. (AP Photo Ted S. Warren)
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren
We’re #2! We’re #2!
By Matt Phillips
Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

We told you it was about to happen.

And it has. Microsoft’s market capitalization just leap-frogged that of the energy giant Exxon Mobil, in what amounts to a remarkable shift in sentiment regarding two blue chip US corporations. At last glance, Microsoft’s market capitalization was above $406 billion, more than Exxon Mobil’s roughly $400 billion.

Exxon’s current downward trajectory is no mystery: It’s tied to slumping oil prices. Microsoft’s surging shares are more surprising. After all, the stock had meandered for more than a decade under the leadership of Steve Ballmer, who announced his retirement in August 2013. He was replaced as CEO by Satya Nadella in February.

Of course, this is a fight for distant second place, as Apple’s more than $650 billion market capitalization—it hit a new record todaymakes it the highest valued company (pdf) in the world, and puts it a cool $250 billion ahead of both Exxon Mobil and Microsoft.

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