Since Facebook debuted in May, the company has lost more than half of its original market value, down from over $100 billion to less than $50 billion. Mark Zuckerberg's personal wealth has sank by nearly $10 billion.
Apple doesn't know that feeling. After four months of stagnation—which seems to be the worst thing that can happen to the formidble stock—share prices have surged in the past couple weeks as investors anticipate groundbreaking fall product launches.
Following myriad rumours of a redesigned iPhone, as well as the possibility of an iPad "mini" and even an Apple TV announcement, Apple's market value has cracked $600 billion. Today in trading it's up nearly 2% with a market value of $620 billion and a share price of $661.
That makes Apple the most valuable publicly traded stock of all time, surpassing Microsoft's peak of $618.9 billion in December 1999 months before the dot-com crash. However, that comparison may not be entirely fair: in today's dollars, Microsoft's market value would have exceeded $840 billion.
Perhaps the most incredible thing is that despite this stock's climb, its price-to-earnings ratio remains a modest 15.5. To compare, even after Facebook's share price was slashed in half, it's P/E ratio is still more than 65.