Apple Inc.’s multiweek rally continued Tuesday, giving the stock its longest winning streak in nearly two decades.
The stock rose 1.9% Tuesday for its 11th straight daily gain, the longest winning streak for Apple +1.91% since a 12-session stretch that ended May 13, 2003, according to Dow Jones Market Data. For context, that 2003 rally began the day Apple introduced the iTunes Store, which sold songs online for 99 cents apiece. The iPod existed at the time, but the company had yet to debut the iPod mini or iPod shuffle; the iPhone was introduced years later, in 2007.
Apple’s 12-session stock rally in May 2003 remains its longest on record. Apple would match that record length if it ends with gains in Wednesday’s trading session, and it would beat the record if its shares advance Thursday as well.
The 2003 rally lifted Apple’s market capitalization to $6.8 billion from $5.1 billion, per Dow Jones Market Data. The company is in vastly different territory now, as its current streak has inched it closer to a $3 trillion valuation. Apple has added $462 billion in market cap over the current 11-session stretch, an amount larger than the total market caps of all but 10 members of the S&P 500, according to Dow Jones Market Data.
Apple may not be currently plotting a shake-up of the music industry as it did back in 2003, but the company could be contemplating a big change to the way it sells iPhones. Bloomberg News reported last week that the company was exploring a possible hardware subscription service, which could allow people to pay for iPhones with a monthly subscription fee linked to the App Store and a user’s Apple ID.
Unlike the installment plans that Apple currently offers, the company wouldn’t simply split the device cost into, say, 24 chunks over 24 months, according to the report. Apple didn’t immediately respond to MarketWatch’s request for comment.
Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty recently chimed in with a positive view of this potential strategy, writing that the average Apple user pays less than $1 day for Apple products and services, by her math. She thinks that owners of Apple devices probably ascribe a greater value than that to Apple’s offerings and believes many would be willing to pay more. A subscription service could help Apple extract more revenue, especially from the most dedicated users, in her view.
The company’s stock closed up 1.9%, wiping out its losses for the year. It’s still about 1.7% off its record close on Jan. 3, when Apple’s market cap hit $3 trillion during the day. As of Tuesday, Apple was worth around $2.9 trillion.
“Apple is a bedrock of strength and overall iPhone and services demand is helping the stock to power back towards the $3 trillion area code,” Dan Ives, an analyst at Wedbush Securities, wrote in an email.
While much of high-growth tech has gotten hammered this year, the big established names have generally held up better than emerging, money-losing companies. With inflation rising at the fastest pace in 40 years and the Federal Reserve hiking interest rates, investors are putting their money in less-risky assets.
“Once the Fed started its rate liftoff this was a bright green light to own tech stocks,” said Ives, who recommends buying Apple shares. “Many investors were caught off guard by this rally and now are playing catchup with Cupertino front and center.”
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