Monday 13 January 2020 2:52 pm

Alphabet nears $1 trillion valuation on ad growth optimism

The valuation of Google parent company Alphabet is on the verge of hitting the prestigious $1 trillion (£770bn) mark after a string of positive analyst coverage pushed up its share price.

Shares in Alphabet edged to within one per cent of the $1 trillion market capitalisation on Friday as the tech firm continues a bullish run that has seen its stock price surge almost 20 per cent in the last six months.

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Analysts at Jefferies and Bank of America last week raised their target prices for the Silicon Valley firm on optimism about growth in its advertising division. Alphabet is due to announce its fourth-quarter earnings on 3 February.

Shares opened marginally higher on the Nasdaq this afternoon, taking the company’s valuation to more than $990bn. 

The milestone would make Alphabet the fourth tech giant to join the trillion-dollar club. Apple was the first firm to break the barrier in 2018, followed by Microsoft and Amazon, which has since slipped to roughly $935bn.

It comes amid a period of upheaval at Google’s parent company, which is facing calls for tougher regulation amid concerns about data use and a lack of competition in the digital ad market.

Last month founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin announced they would step down as executives at Alphabet, ushering in Sundar Pichai as joint boss of both Google and its parent.

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Although the firm continues to snap up huge revenue from its online advertising business, it has also pumped more money into its so-called Other Bets unit, which focuses on new avenues such as cloud computing and artificial intelligence.

While tech titans have dominated the valuation rankings, they have since been usurped by Saudi Aramco, which last month became the world’s first $2 trillion company.