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Why Stock Is at a New High Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) Stock Hits an All-time High

Preface Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) stock has broken an all-time high today. Its market cap now stands at over $350 billion, making it one of the five largest companies in the world behind Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL), Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM).

While it's the flavor of the month to either portray as the soon to be largest company in the world, or as the poster child for an overvalued stock. What we rarely read in these narratives is fact. Let's stick with facts in some staggering charts, and point out the good and the bad.

We'll start with two staggering revenue charts. First, we look at in isolation. Here is the firm's revenue chart rolled up into trailing twelve month periods.

AMZN has seen revenue measured in trailing twelve month periods rise every quarter for over 10 straight years. Perhaps more impressive is that even on an enormous revenue base, the growth over the last year still stands at 23.3%.

But, we need to put that revenue number into context. Here is a chart of revenue over the last year for all technology companies with market caps above $50 billion.

While Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) will roll off of almost anyone's tongue as the largest revenue producer in technology, far fewer would know that is in fact carrying the second largest revenue base in the world for technology companies, standing at over $113 billion. While that's a far cry from Apple at over $227 billion, it is larger than Microsoft, IBM and Alphabet.

Revenue growth alone isn't enough to justify a valuation that puts in the five largest companies in the world. The momentum behind the stock rise has been driven by the reality that is now able to grow it margins as revenue increases. That's the holy grail of financial metrics. With the introduction of Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Amazon Prime at around 2006, has seen gross margins explode higher.

Of all the charts we will look at, it's this one that carries perhaps the most value. is growing revenue faster than every mega cap technology company not named Facebook, but no other firm is seeing an increase in gross margin like AMZN is.

With revenue and gross margin booming, is now finally seeing legitimate profits. Here is the sixteen year chart of net income over trailing twelve month periods.

Not only did AMZN post its largest quarterly earnings last quarter and its largest annual earnings, but the number is expected to grow exponentially. While $1.1.7 billion in after tax earnings in the last year pales in comparison to Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL) and Apple, Thomson First Call estimates call for $9.91 in earnings per share for 2017 compared with less than one third of that for 2015.

The final chart for is unbelievable. While everything we have discussed is backward looking, the future is defined by innovation. Here is a chart hat ranks every company in every industry over $100 billion in market cap on research and development over the last year.

It may seem unreal, but spends more on R&D than Alphabet (GOOGL), Apple (AAPL), Intel, Microsoft (MSFT) and every other company in the world.

AMAZON.COM INC. (NASDAQ:AMZN) CONCLUSION is seeing revenue growth accelerate and now stands as the second largest revenue generator in all of technology behind only Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and well ahead of GOOGL and MSFT. The company sees gross margins rising faster than any other firm, earnings growing rapidly and spends more on R&D than any other firm, including the hallowed Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL) and Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) -- the two firms most famous for R&D expenditures.

And so, the final image is simply the stock chart.

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