Apple Inc. topped $500 for the first time since January, a day after activist investor Carl Icahn disclosed a stake in the world’s largest technology company, and amid optimism that new iPhones and iPads can bolster growth.
The shares rose 2.3 percent to $501 at 12:07 p.m. in New York, for the biggest intraday gain since Jan. 23. Apple had declined 8 percent this year through yesterday, compared with a 19 percent gain for the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.
Apple plans to introduce new versions of the iPhone and iPad in time for the holiday shopping season, seeking to entice shoppers who delayed purchases amid a dearth of new models so far this year. The iPhone and iPad accounted for almost 70 percent of the company’s sales last quarter. Apple, whose stock has dropped by more than 25 percent from a record in September, got a crucial vote of confidence yesterday from Icahn, who said he is pressing Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook for a share buyback.