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Did Apple Land This Growth Grand Prize?

Alex Dumortier, CFA
December 3, 2013

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over daily movements, we do like to keep an eye on market changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

Following Monday's losses, stocks opened slightly lower today, with the S&P 500 and the narrower, price-weighted Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI) down 0.16% and 0.32%, respectively, at 10:15 a.m. EST.

Shares of Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) are up 1.9%, testing the 2013 closing high of $556.07 they achieved last Friday, as two significant pieces of news regarding the iPhone maker hit the market this morning.

First, in a validation of the rise of Twitter's influence, Apple has acquired social-media analytics firm Topsy Labs for more than $200 million. Topsy's tools help to make sense of the roughly 500 million daily tweets by analyzing topics, terms, or hashtags on a historical or real-time basis, identifying influential users and measuring the effectiveness of an event or campaign.

Those capabilities could be relevant to several of Apple's existing applications, with analysts mentioning the iTunes media store, the Siri voice assistant, and the iAd advertising platform as the most likely candidates. The latt