Microsoft Corp. on Wednesday briefly surpassed $1 trillion in valuation for the first time, boosted by better-than-expected earnings and the growth of the company’s cloud business.
So far this year, Microsoft’s stock has gained about 24 percent, after hitting a record high of $125.85 during regular trading hours. Shares continued to climb in after-hours trading, sending the market cap over $1 trillion.
That makes it the third U.S. company to top $1 trillion in market capitalization; Apple became the first in August and was followed in September by Amazon. Apple is the only company, however, to have spent some time above $1 trillion, although it has not done so since November.
During the third quarter, the Seattle-based company reported a 14 percent increase in revenue to $30.6 billion. Its operating income was $10.3 billion, an increase of 25 percent from the year-ago period.
“Leading organizations of every size in every industry trust the Microsoft cloud,” CEO Satya Nadella said in a statement. “We are accelerating our innovation across the cloud and edge so our customers can build the digital capability increasingly required to compete and grow.”
According to Dow Jones data, Microsoft hasn’t held the title as the most valuable U.S. company since the dot-com boom in 2003. Under Nadella, the company has benefited from optimism about demand for cloud computing services, while concerns about the iPhone’s future have hurt Apple.
Amazon and Microsoft have both dominated the cloud market: According to Synergy Research Group, Amazon controls more than 30 percent of the cloud infrastructure services market share, followed by Microsoft at 15 percent.