Hot off the heels of Apple’s iBook Textbooks and iBooks Author announcement, the Cupertino, Calif.-based Company passed a $400 billion market cap briefly today, AllThingsD pointed out. Apple also saw a new company record of $431 a share this afternoon —up $2 from yesterday’s record. As the afternoon continued on, Apple’s market cap went down to $398 billion again, but it is still close to coming back. For comparison, the world’s most valuable company, Exxon, has a market cap of $417 billion. Apple was at one time the most valuable company in 2011.

As CNN Money pointed out, Apple with a market cap of $400 billion is worth more than the countries Greece, Austria, Argentina, and South Africa.

Apple dominated financially in 2011, and it continues in 2012. Next Tuesday, the company will report what is expected to be record earnings from Q4. Apple is also expected to break past the sales of 5 million Macs and up to 30 million iPhones, some analysts claimed. We will be covering Apple’s financial announcement next Tuesday. Stay tuned!

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