GUSHER

08.01.13

ExxonMobil’s Profits and Market Capitalization Rival Apple’s

As a rule, the stock market loves 21st-century technology much more than 19th-century industries. But ExxonMobil continues to challenge Apple as the nation’s most valuable company.
XOM Chart

XOM data by YCharts

In the battle of old-school stock versus the new order, we often forget that the tried and true companies in this country are still going strong. In recent years, technology stocks Apple and Google have dueled it out for the status of most valuable American company. But while these stocks ricochet around, a company that traces its roots to the 19th century, gives them a run for the money: ExxonMobil. As Google’s stock has fallen by the wayside a bit, Apple and ExxonMobil have been battling for the top spot. It’s a battle of new versus old, of lovable gadgets and fun apps against a dirty energy source. But ExxonMobil is holding up quite well.

With Apple reporting quarterly earnings last week and ExxonMobil announcing results Thursday morning, the strength of these two companies is ripe for comparison. In the second quarter of 2013, Apple raked in a net profit of $6.9 billion. Buoyed by steady consumption and the high global price of crude oil, ExxonMobil posted a net profit of about $6.86 billion—just barely behind. Midday Thursday, ExxonMobil’s stock-market capitalization was about $407.5 billion, just below Apple’s $414 billion. ExxonMobil may be an old-school, capital-intensive resource company, but it is churning out results that rival those of Apple. Over the past year, as shown on the chart, ExxonMobil’s stock has managed to climb steadily, while Apple is subject to much more fluctuation.

Next time you think that new technology commands the market in this country, think again. ExxonMobil has been here a lot longer, and big oil isn’t going anywhere—at least not yet.