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THE AMAZING RACE

Alphabet is within a hair of dethroning Apple as the world’s most valuable company

A person costumed as the Android operating system mascot greets visitors at Google headquarters in Mountain View, Calif., Thursday, April 25, 2013. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez
It’s a brave new world.
By Alice Truong

Deputy editor

This article is more than 2 years old.

When markets closed in the US on Jan. 29, just $13 billion separated Alphabet from Apple, the world’s most valuable company.

With each passing day, it’s becoming ever more likely that Alphabet, Google’s new parent company, will overtake Apple in market capitalization.

When Quartz first noted that Alphabet was within arm’s reach of surpassing Apple’s market value, the Mountain View, California company was still lagging by $47 billion. Then, we said the scenario that would propel Alphabet to the top hinged on an earnings disappointment from Apple and better-than-expected results from Alphabet.

Well, Apple reported slightly slower revenue growth for its holiday quarter and provided a weak sales forecast for the current quarter, both below analyst consensus. Its stock hasn’t suffered tremendously, but since releasing its results, it was down 3% as of the close of Jan. 29.

So now it’s Alphabet’s move. Its stock has been incrementally climbing in recent days leading up to earnings, which it reports tomorrow (Feb. 1) and analysts overall are optimistic about, projecting a 17% increase in sales year over year, according to FactSet. And as Google has demonstrated in the past, a stellar earnings report can add tens of billions of dollars of value in a single day.

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