Todd Harrison: Apple upswing reversing the law of gravity?
It's been a busy week on Wall Street: Between the Federal Open Market Committee meeting, stress tests for the banks - Citigroup, SunTrust, Met Life and Ally Financial didn't make the cut - a disgruntled former Goldman Sachs employee venting in the media, and options expirations, there was no shortage of action.
The most intriguing dynamic, however, may be the price action in Apple stock, which lifted as much as 10% for the week and has rallied almost 50% in the year to date (and it's only March!). To put this in perspective, Apple - sporting a market capitalization in the $550 billion range - is valued at more than General Electric, Intel and Google combined.
To be clear, I love my iPad 2, iPhone 4 and iTouch. As a consumer, I drank the Kool-Aid a long time ago. As a 20-year stock market veteran, however, I feel like I've seen this movie before. Indeed, if you overlay the current trajectory of Apple against that of Google in 2007, they align perfectly. But then Google fell 45% in the next four months.
Past performance is obviously no guarantee of future results. A smart man once said that you can pick the direction of stocks or the timing of a move, but you'll rarely pick both. However, this warrants a mention as the world holds hands and Siri sings "Kumbaya."
Of course, where you stand is a function of where you sit, and the single most important rule of thumb in the markets is to sync your time horizon with your risk profile. We've seen this parabolic frolic before, and it was always different - until it wasn't.
Sir Isaac Newton would most certainly agree.
Todd Harrison is the author of "The Other Side of Wall Street" and the founder and CEO of Minyanville, an Emmy Award-winning financial media platform. Read him daily at www.minyanville.com.