Apple stock began trading at $92 US on U.S. markets this morning after a seven-for-one stock split that awarded existing shareholders six new shares for every Apple share they owned after markets closed on Friday.
The stock was up 1.6 per cent at the close at $93.70, a level that Apple CEO Tim Cook believes will make the shares seem more accessible to a larger number of investors.
The market value of the company remains the same, but the stock becomes more appealing psychologically to investors because of a lower price that is easier to perceive as a value investment.
Apple stock was trading at $645 US on Friday and has gone as high as $705 on the Nasdaq.
Could be included in Dow
By taking Apple’s stock price below $100, it removes any obstacle for the stock to be chosen for inclusion in the Dow index.
Bloomberg analyst Jonathan Ferro speculates the company may be hoping for the prestige factor of being included in the Dow.
“It won’t happen overnight,” he warned. “It might be one year or two years.”
A Wall Street committee readjusts the composition of the Dow periodically, in an attempt to make it reflect the U.S. economy. The closely watched benchmark is supposed to mirror key sectors of the economy, a role that seems perfectly suited for Apple given the popularity of its products.
The Dow`s value is calculated with greater clout to the more expensive stocks and a stock priced at $700 would skew the weighting of the index. Apple's previous high stock price made it impractical to include, while a stock in the $100 range is likely to be more in line with the committee's expectations. Visa Inc. is the only Dow Jones company with a current stock price above $200.
Stock up since split announced
Since Apple announced in April its plan to split its stock, Apple shares have climbed by 23 per cent.
This despite criticism of the iPad and iPhone developer for failing to create any new technology breakthrough products in the last few years.