Apple's market value reaches $600bn

Company now most valuable US firm
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Apple's stocks have continued their meteoric rise, nearly doubling in price from a year ago to give the company a market value of $600 billion.

With stock prices hitting a high of $644, Apple has come a long way from its 1997 low of $3.19 a share.

The hardware manufacturer lost co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs to cancer last year, but his death has not phased the company stocks, which have skyrocketed since January.

According to the BBC, Apple has over $97 billion in cash, which it will use to pay dividends to shareholders.

The company plans to spend $45 billion over the next three years.