Microsoft hit the trillion-dollar value mark on Thursday for the first time, becoming the third technology giant to reach the milestone. Shares in Microsoft rallied some 5% in early Wall Street trade after a robust earnings report a day earlier to lift the value briefly above US$1 trillion
The stock ended the day with a gain of 3.3% at US$129.15, translating to a market valuation of some US$990 billion.
At its current levels, Microsoft is the world's most valuable company, ahead of Apple and Amazon, which both topped US$1 trillion last year before slipping back.
On Wednesday, Microsoft said profits in the quarter to March 31 rose 19% to US$8.8 billion on revenues of US$30.8 billion, an increase of 14% from the same period a year earlier.
The results were driven by growth in cloud computing and business services, the new focus for Microsoft after a long run as a leader in consumer software.
Richard Davis and David Hynes of Canaccord Genuity said Microsoft delivered a boringly excellent quarter. They said in a research note that Microsoft is still getting strong results from its legacy Windows business as it expands to new services.
When your legacy business doesn't decay as fast as expected and your aggregate growth business exceeds expectations, estimates go up, and that has led the stock higher, they wrote.
We see no reason to conclude that this trend will change anytime in the next few quarters.