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Apple's Long Road To $300 264

Posted by samzenpus
from the long-strange-trip dept.
itwbennett writes "Apple shares inched over $300 for the first time Wednesday, nearly 30 years after Apple's initial public offering in December 1980. But it hasn't been a steady climb. In fact, says blogger Chris Nurney, 'Apple's stock history can be divided into two clear periods — the early years, from the IPO through Steve Jobs's long absence from the company after losing a power struggle in 1985, and the modern Jobs era, which began on September 16, 1997.' The bottom line: 'If you had purchased $10,000 of Apple stock the same month that Jobs again began leading the company, your shares would be worth $554,000 today. Not a bad return on the investment.'"
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Apple's Long Road To $300

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  • by rolfwind (528248) on Thursday October 14, 2010 @06:02AM (#33891458)

    Steve Jobs came back in 1997 and it had a small surge that was crushed in the dot com boom. Up to early 2004, you could acquire shares reasonably close to the 1997 price, it fluctated 1.5-2x, sometimes 3x, but after early 2004 it skyrocketed.

    1997-2004 is when they had all those color iMacs and gaudy design (remember those awful clamshell notebooks?) befoe the industrial design. It returned to profitabilty, to be sure, and laid a lot of other groundwork, like 2001 was the release of OS X, to be sure.

    And that same year (2001) iPod was released. Think about that. For almost 3 years after iPod's release, you could still have bought Apple at a bargain basement price. It took a long time for Wall Street to shed the malaise it had with Apple after the late 80s and early/mid-90s decline.

    • I'd love to see Minard-type illustrated map of product lines, sales of each product, board members and share price for the 1997-2010 period.
    • by lennier1 (264730)

      To be fair, Mac OS 9 was crap of the worst kind (think "Windows Me") and Apple must have known this all along, since their designers even provided iMac owners with a handle to throw it into the trash.

      • by rolfwind (528248)

        Mac 7 and 8 weren't that hot either. I remember the bomb way to vividly. It made of the Windows Systems of the day seem stable and we're talking about Win 95/98. And to people using NT back then, Mac must have been a really bad joke.

        I never used 9, so I can't guess how it was worse than the crap 7/8 already was, other than being even longer in the tooth in it's day.

      • Sounds like something right out of the "I Hate Macintosh" bible. Seriously, compared to other OSes available in 1999, what specifically was crap about Mac OS 9? What OS would you hold up as a superior product? NT?
        • by lennier1 (264730)

          Just an example, but so far OS 9 is the only OS that ever crashed on me after displaying a simple standard screensaver. Considering the only app installed at that time was a Novell client I'd call that an achievement.

    • by Jazz-Masta (240659) on Thursday October 14, 2010 @07:04AM (#33891700)

      And that same year (2001) iPod was released. Think about that. For almost 3 years after iPod's release, you could still have bought Apple at a bargain basement price. It took a long time for Wall Street to shed the malaise it had with Apple after the late 80s and early/mid-90s decline.

      Also remember that iPod sales didn't begin to explode until after Apple released the Windows compatible iTunes. Sure, MusicMatch would work in 2002, but it has hacked together at best and not many people knew about it.

      The 3rd gen (late April 2003) came with Windows compatible iTunes. It was the 4th gen in Oct 2004 that really began to pick up.

      So the iPod for those 2 years was only officially compatible with Mac (5-8% market share depending on where you get your stats). Limiting yourself to within that market share isn't a very good idea.

      • by mcvos (645701)

        Also remember that iPod sales didn't begin to explode until after Apple released the Windows compatible iTunes. Sure, MusicMatch would work in 2002, but it has hacked together at best and not many people knew about it.

        When using playlists, MusicMatch could end up putting the same song on your iPod several times. I ran out of space unreasonably fast. MusicMatch was a piece of crap.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Sockatume (732728)

      With restrospect, around 2004 the iPod was sold on its luxury, and the Mac on its friendliness. They flipped that around so that the iPod was friendly and massmarket (Mini), while the Mac was a capable computer (Macbook, new iMac). Yet they held an afterimage that the iPod was high quality and the Mac was easy to use. That switcheroo was pretty savvy, in hindsight.

    • ...remember those awful clamshell notebooks...

      Yes. I remember them fondly. I still think, to this day, that the graphite notebook is one of the coolest looking laptops I've ever owned.

  • by PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) on Thursday October 14, 2010 @06:11AM (#33891504)

    'If you had purchased $10,000 of Apple stock the same month that Jobs again began leading the company, your shares would be worth $554,000 today. Not a bad return on the investment.'"

    However, if you bought Apple stock, you probably bought about $600,000 in Apple products: iPhones, iPads, iTunes iThinkpads . . . etc.

    So you are down 56,000 on the deal

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Pieroxy (222434)

      But you have a heck of a lot of gadgets to sell back on eBay if you need cash !

  • by bkmoore (1910118) on Thursday October 14, 2010 @06:17AM (#33891528)
    As a long-time Apple investor, I am not terribly surprised that Apple has finally cracked the $300 dollar barrier. The reason I am bullish on Apple and have been for over ten years is that Apple has repeatedly shown it has the ability to find a technical product or market, analyze what is wrong with the current offerings and make a ground breaking product that basically redefines that market. That was the reason the original Apple 2 was successful. You didn't have to know how to wield a soldering iron to have an affordable home computer. The Macintosh again redefined the market by making a mouse-based graphical user interface widely available. Sure others went there first with the Altair proceeding the Apple 2, or the Xerox Alto proceeding the Macintosh, but both products had technical or cost flaws that crippled their chances in the market. This is the same basic formula that Steve Jobs applied to mp3 music players, online music and video sales, cell phones, and most recently tablets. He wasn't the first one to invent these things, but he was the one who was able to see where the short comings were and come up with a better product. Technical users can trash talk Apples products all they want and rant about how brand x's offering can do so much more and costs so much less, but the proof is in the sales. Apple only makes 30 or so products, so they can focus on each product with laser-beam intensity and make it the best in its market. I can't even count how many products Sony, Dell or HP make. Some are great, others are trash. People like Apple's products and keep buying them as fast as Apple can make them. So as long as Apple is able to continue with this business model, I will remain bullish on Apple.
  • I bought at $10 and finally sold at $180. The thing that scares me about holding Apple stock long-term is Jobs's pancreatic cancer. Apple management demonstrated clearly that they are not forthcoming about their CEO's health, and let's face it, we've seen what would happen to Apple if Jobs had to dial back his involvement. More than any other company Apple needs its CEO.

    They do make great products though, and deserve all their success. I hope my fears are unfounded and that Steve lives a long and health

  • I bought one share of Apple stock back in September 2001, when it was trading at about $20. The stock has split since then, so I now have two shares.

    Hearing this news, I really wish I'd bought more.

  • It is very much a key man company. I don't want to be holding stock the year Steve Jobs dies - no one else has the, no, I won't say "vision" for a company that repackages old tech and patents something as innovative as a text filter - call it the marketing skills, Steve has. The minute he dies Apple becomes an overpriced PALM.

  • Wish I had bought AAPL and GOOG in real life rather than in a stock market simulator game.

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