Apple stock leapt up in trading today, closing regular trading at $411.63, which is an all-time closing high for the company. Even in after hours trading the stock is still up at $411.40.
Even more interesting than its continued rise, however, is the fact that the stock is up 10.14% since the day after Steve Jobs stepped down as CEO and took on the role of Chairman nearly a month ago, when the stock hit $373.72.
This overall increase shows continued faith in the leadership that Jobs has put in place over the past few years. The executive team at Apple is one of the strongest of any company in the world and the continued shareholder enthusiasm shows that they know it.
Apple is confident in Tim Cook as well, offering him a very sweet stock package that clocks in at 1 million shares that vest over the next 10 years. You can bet that this was a carefully calculated move on the part of Apple and Cook to engender confidence in his long-term commitment.
Tim Cook has proved to be an able COO over the past few years and what little interaction we’ve seen him have publicly so far shows that, while his style may be different than Jobs, he also loves Apple.
And all of this growth has come despite the fact that the company has yet to announce any iPhone or iPod products, both of which are expected before the holiday season. This is shaping up to be a monster quarter for Apple and I think that $550 is very much in reach by the end of the year.