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Microsoft Is the Second Richest Company

Due to strong stock growth and a massive slide in oil prices over the past few months, Microsoft's market cap surpassed that of Exxon Mobil Corp. when markets closed this afternoon.

By the numbers, Microsoft is now at about $408.9 billion, while Exxon sits at $400.8 billion, according to Reuters. This is good enough to claim the second spot for the richest companies. Microsoft still trails technology sector rival and overall most valuable company Apple Inc. by a lot. Apple sits at $663 billion, and its share prices have increased faster than Microsoft's through 2014.

Google also briefly wrested the No. 2 spot from Exxon twice this year, for four days in February and two days in March. Google stock prices have declined slightly this year and its current value is $373 billion.

Nonetheless, Microsoft's stock performance under new CEO Satya Nadella has been none too shabby. Since Nadella took over on Feb. 4 of this year, Microsoft shares are up 36 percent to 49.61.

Lest you give all the credit to the new guy, Microsoft's stock has been on a pretty steady upward trajectory for awhile now. Stretching back to a low in December 2012 before former CEO Steve Ballmer was even hinting at leaving, the stock is up nearly 90 percent.

With a price of 50 in range, is it crazy to wonder if MSFT could reclaim its 1999 (split-adjusted) peak of 58.72?

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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