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Apple now bigger than IBM & Intel

Mac maker worth over $160bn

Apple is now the most valuable computer maker in the world, according to share price.

Driven by the company's record-setting Q4 financial results and a wave of positive upgrades from analysts across the board, Apple's shares shot up to $186.10 per share on Tuesday. While the shares lost $1.80 on early trading on Wednesday, the company's market capital remains around the $161.84bn mark.

That's higher than IBM ($155bn), Intel ($156bn) and Nokia ($150bn). It puts Apple into fourth place in the top technology stocks, behind Cisco ($189bn), Google ($208bn) and Microsoft ($290bn).

With strong growth across all its product range predicted, and an ongoing mass resurgence in Mac sales, Apple seems set to maintain its momentum.

The huge increase in market capital also underscores the notion of the iPod halo - a halo which seems to be driving interest in Macs and the iPhone.

Industry watchers observe that Apple's success can also be attributed to Microsoft's failure to ignite the market with its new OS, Windows Vista. Many Windows users are moving to Mac - with Apple this week confirming 50 percent of Macs sold through its retail stores are sold to new users.

Apple's move to surpass IBM in market capital was first predicted earlier this month by Georges Yared of Yared Investment Research.

Yared compared Apple's market worth with that of IBM, observing: "Apple will surpass IBM before the first quarter of 2008 is in the books, if not sooner."

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