Top 10 Companies By Market Cap Then (2001) And Now

The list of the world's most valued companies has remained dynamic over the years. Manufacturing companies, which once dominated the list, are now hardly found, giving way to a near clean sweep by software and services companies. Benzinga looked at these changing dynamics by comparing the list of most valued companies in 2001 and two decades later in 2021.

Conglomerate GE Led The Pack In 2001: 

Conglomerate General Electric Company (GE) was the most valued company in 2001, and quite rightly so, as it was once considered the bellwether of the U.S. economy, given the diverse businesses under its fold. The company's reactive approach to emerging opportunities is considered the primary reason among the many factors for its downfall. The company is now no longer part of the prestigious Dow Jones Industrial Average.

A few technology names, pharma major Pfizer, Inc. (PFE), retail giant Walmart Inc. (WMT) were among the other companies that made the top 10 list in 2001.

A Different Era and Radically Different Companies Dominate In 2021:

Tech companies made up a majority of the top 10 companies in 2021. Except for Saudi Aramco and Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK-A), all the other companies belonged to the tech sector.

Tech behemoth Apple, Inc. (AAPL) with $2.478 trillion in market cap, is the most valued company currently, followed by software giant Microsoft, Inc. 

Incidentally, Microsoft is the only company that is part of both the lists (MSFT). 


Musk Finds It Interesting: 

Tesla, Inc. (TSLA ) founder and CEO Elon Musk views the changing dynamics as "interesting." His reaction came in a reply to a tweet that highlighted the change over the two-decade period.


© 2021 Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

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Wendell Brown 1 month ago Member's comment

I'm a little curious as to how the CEO of Motley Fool ran the info 2 days before your article if as you say, you put it together...