Microsoft surpasses Apple to become world's most valuable public company

Microsoft ended the week ahead of Apple as the world’s most valuable publicly traded U.S. company.

Microsoft closed on Friday with a market value of $851 billion as Apple trailed at $847 billion.


Microsoft had not closed out on top since 2000, the Associated Press reported.

While Apple surpassed a trillion-dollar market capitalization in August — the first company to do so — its stock has been downgraded in the wake of weaker earnings and a slowdown in iPhone sales.

Microsoft, meanwhile, has seen its stock steadily rise since CEO Satya Nadella took over four years ago.

The company placed its bets on cloud computing, with Nadella making the cloud a central tenet of the company, nearly doubling its share of the market, according to The New York Times. The Times reported that Microsoft's focus on the cloud, as well as revamping its Office apps, sent its stock soaring.

The company also shed its hefty investment in smartphones, which had not been as profitable as Microsoft once hoped, and doubled down on developing apps for consumers.