The Largest USA Tech Companies have reported first quarter 2012 financial results and we are now awaiting second quarter earnings season in July. Benjamin Graham said, “In the short run, the market is a voting machine but in the long run it is a weighing machine.” How has the market voted?
The quick answer is: There is Apple, then everyone else, in the market valuation stakes – and I really mean everyone else. Apple is the clear and continuing leader of all companies in the world with a market capitalization of $535 billion. Exxon Mobil is a distant #2 worldwide at $392 billion. In the technology sector, Apple is larger than #2 Microsoft and #3 IBM combined and the latest AAPL earnings were incredible.
Microsoft is #2 at $252 billion and IBM is #3 at $231 billion. These two have jostled for the #2 position over the months, but the latest quarterly earnings favored Microsoft. Google is fourth at $184 billion but has never really mounted a threat for #3. Even with the latest record financial performance, Google created significant uncertainty for stockholders.
Further back are #5 Oracle ($139 billion) and #6 Intel ($137 billion). Oracle reported encouraging earnings and outlook in March and will report this next week. Intel reported discouraging financial results in April as they scramble to refresh their product line.
Now the race gets interesting and surprising. Amazon ($99 billion) at #7 has jumped ahead of #8 Qualcomm ($96 billion) and #9 Cisco ($92 billion). Amazon’s latest earnings report was lackluster. Qualcomm reported record financial results and Cisco reported steady earnings but a lower outlook.
Struggling HP, which reorganizes reorganizations, is #10 and last place at $43 billion, which is less than 10% of Apple’s market capitalization! HP’s latest earnings were solid but yet more restructuring and layoffs were announced along with a significant goodwill charge.
I have included Amazon, more of an online retailer, because of the Kindle Fire, streaming, cloud services, and the resulting competition with others listed. EMC Corporation ($51 billion market cap) would actually be the next traditional USA big tech company.
The market valuation above is as of the market close on June 15, 2012 and provides a snapshot of value. All prior and expected financial performance and position has been priced into these publicly traded stocks, along with any other financial system, economic, and political uncertainties to-date.
Updated through HP quarterly financial results reported 5-23-12
Next reports: Oracle (June 21)