Apple shares hit $700, up 72% since January

Faith Merino · September 17, 2012 · Short URL:

How have share prices reacted to other product launches?

Since Apple unveiled the iPhone 5 last week (it’s taller!!!!), its shares have been steadily climbing.  Apple shares are up 5.59% since last Tuesday, closing Monday at $699.78.  But they continued to climb in after-hours trading and have since crossed the $700 mark for a record market cap of $657 billion.

Apple’s soaring shares are no doubt the result of the company’s announcement Monday morning that it sold more than two million in the first 24 hours that preorders were available, making it the most successful iPhone launch ever.  The record number of iPhone 5 units sold doubles Apple’s previous record with one million iPhone 4S units sold in the first 24 hours.  It took the iPhone 4S three days to reach two million units sold.

Taking a little stroll down Memory Lane…it took the original iPhone 74 days to reach one million units sold.  The first iPad sold one million units in a little less than one month.  But the very first iPod?  That beautiful little device that kicked off the whole mobile device craze took a full year to sell just one quarter of a million units.

So how has Apple’s stock fared in the days following its many product launches?


When Apple released the first iPod back in October of 2001, the company was in a bad place in terms of its stock.  Shares were trading at $7.75 by the end of September.  By mid-October, shares had climbed to just over $9.  The iPod was unveiled on October 21, 2001, and by November, Apple shares had climbed a few cents, but by the end of the year, Apple shares were trading at $11.21.


Fast-forward a few years, and in early 2007, Apple shares are trading at $85.  In February, Apple begins pushing advertisements for what would be the first iPhone.  Between February and June 2007—when the iPhone was first unveiled—shares climbed to more than $122.  The iPhone went on sale on June 29, 2007 and in its first week, shares climbed from $122 to $132.  By the end of December 2007, Apple shares had reached $199.

iPhone 3G

The iPhone 3G didn’t have as dramatic an impact on Apple shares.  Despite selling one million units in its first three days, Apple shares actually fell from $172 to $165 in its first week.  Shares plunged back down to $85 by the end of the year.

iPhone 3GS

The iPhone 3GS, however, was something of a game-changer for Apple.  The iPhone 3GS was released on June 19, 2009, and in the first week after the release, shares climbed to $142 from $139.  But—notably—they just kept climbing.  By the end of 2009, Apple shares were trading at $210.


Then came the iPad.  Released April 3, 2010, the original iPad had a noticeable impact on Apple’s stock, with share prices rising to $241 from $235 in its first week.  By the end of April, shares were trading at $261.

iPhone 4

The fourth-generation iPhone sold 1.7 million units in its first three days—topping every other product release in Apple’s history.  Released on June 24, 2010, it sold out within 20 hours.  In the first week after its release, Apple shares dipped to $246 from $266.  But shares continued to climb and by the end of 2010, Apple was trading at $322.

iPad 2

The second-generation iPad debuted on March 11, 2011, and despite rave reviews, Apple shares dropped more than $20 in its first week to $330 from $351. 

iPhone 4S

Everyone was expecting an iPhone 5, but Apple surprised with an iPhone 4S instead.  The iPhone 4S sold four million units in its first three days, and Apple’s stock saw a noticeable uptick, ascending to $400 from $372 in the week after it was unveiled.  When Apple revealed the record number of units sold, shares climbed to $422. 

The New iPad

By this time, we’ve all realized we should’ve bought Apple stock years ago.  In the weeks leading up to the unveiling of the third-generation iPad, share prices climb from $411 to $585—just from January to March.  Apple releases the New iPad on March 16, and on March 19, the company issues a dividend and a $10 billion share buyback.  Apple also reveals that it sold a record-breaking three million iPads in the first three days of the device’s availability.  Shares go from $585 on March 16 to $605 on March 20.

And now here we are.  The iPhone 5 launch came just weeks after Apple won a landmark court case against Samsung, which had already boosted share prices mightily.  Between January and September 2012, Apple shares have climbed nearly $300 a piece from $411 to $701.  Apple’s market cap has gone up 72% since January.  Will shares top out at $800 by the end of the year?  It’s not that far-fetched.


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