Apple No. 5 on Fortune 500 list

Today, Fortune released the 61st Fortune 500, its annual list of the largest corporations in the United States ranked by revenue for the 2014 fiscal year. The Fortune 500 companies earned a combined total revenue of $12.5 trillion in 2014, up 2.6% from last year and an all-time high. The total market value for the Fortune 500 hit $17.4 trillion (as of 3/31/15), setting an all-time record for worth and marking an increase of 7.7% over the previous year. This year’s Fortune 500 companies also employ more people than ever, with 26.8 million total employees. Profits decreased 12.6% over the previous year, falling below the trillion dollar mark at a combined total of $945 billion.

Walmart takes the top spot for the third year in a row and the eleventh time ever. Only three companies have held the no. 1 spot on the Fortune 500 since its creation in 1955: General Motors, Exxon Mobil and Walmart. No. 5 Apple boasts both the biggest profits of any company on the list ($39.5 billion) and the highest market value (more than $700 billion).

This year’s list ties the record (set last year) for highest number of female CEOs with 24, including Mary Barra (General Motors), Meg Whitman (Hewlett-Packard), Ginny Rometty (IBM) and more. At 392 pages, this year’s Fortune 500 issue is the biggest issue of Fortune since 2005. The issue hits newsstands on Monday, June 8.

Some other items of interest from this year’s Fortune 500 list:
• Facebook jumps nearly 100 spots — from #341 to #242 — to crack the top 250 in just its third year on the list.
• New York is the state with the most companies on the list with 55, followed by Texas with 54 and California with 53.
• 19 companies make their debut on this year’s list including, Netflix, Expedia and News Corp.
• CVS Health makes the top ten for the first time.
• 57 of the companies have been on the list since its inception in 1955 including Exxon Mobil, Chevron, Proctor & Gamble, PepsiCo and Hershey.
• 26 companies have been displaced from the list, including Coach, Medtronic and Mylan.
• Energy Future Holdings lost the most money of any company from the previous year with a decrease of $6.4 billion; Caesars Entertainment, Sears and Target also among the top 10 money losers.

FORTUNE 500 Top 10 list:
1. Wal-Mart Stores
2. Exxon Mobil
3. Chevron
4. Berkshire Hathaway

5. Apple: After a bumpy start to 2014, Apple’s stock finished the year up 40%, adding nearly $200 billion to the company’s market value. A product pipeline that’s gotten Apple fanboys lining up all over again has certainly helped reenergize revenue growth: In addition to unveiling new categories like Apple Pay and Apple Watch, the company launched the iPhone 6, selling a record-breaking 10 million units in the first three days. As CEO Tim Cook recently told investors: “It’s tough to find something in the numbers not to like.” The normally low-profile Cook is breaking new ground in other ways too—in October, 2014 he came out as the first openly gay CEO of a Fortune 500 company.

6. General Motors
7. Phillips 66
8. General Electric
9. Ford Motor
10. CVS Health

See the full ranking on here.


Apple’s iTunes empire alone would be ranked number 130 in Fortune 500 – February 11, 2014
Apple jumps to No. 6 from No. 17 in Fortune 500 – May 6, 2013
2012 Fortune 500 list released: Apple Inc. #17 – May 7, 2012
Apple vaults into top 50 of Fortune 500 – May 5, 2011
Apple shoots up 15 spots to 56th place on 2010 Fortune 500 list of largest U.S. corporations – April 15, 2010
Apple jumps 38 spots to land at No. 121 on Fortune 500 list – April 16, 2007


  1. Yes, Apple is currently #5 in terms of revenue but on the same list, it is #1 in both net profit and market capitalization.

    I expect Apple to be #3 on the revenue ranking next year.

      1. Not sure if you were being sarcastic. The other Steve was talking about dollar value not percentage. Apple beats out others handily in terms of dollars profit.

        1. Seems to me he was actually agreeing i.e. its better surely to make more profit on less turnover than less profit on more turnover so percentage is very relevant. If he wasn’t then he would not be someone I would want running a business for it would be far too much like Dell.

    1. Revenue is not more important than profit. It’s simply the Fortune 500 list has always chosen to rank US companies according to their total revenue during the financial year.

      I think it’s better to stick to one consistent way of ranking companies, even if it has obvious drawbacks. If you change the ranking system, you can no longer make meaningful comparisons with previous years.

      One problem with ranking by profit is that profit can be affected by all sorts of things such as litigation, tax changes, development costs, acquisitions, employee and raw material costs. Some companies try to manipulate their apparent profits downwards in order to reduce their tax liability. On the other hand, revenue is a simple headline figure that is readily available and not easy to manipulate.

      1. Indeed turnover does give a relative size to a company that cuts out short term fluctuations and gives a good indication of what way it is headed too. It is just a starting point however with more or less important factors about actual real time performance to then be studied more closely.

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