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Apple loses almost $10billion in four-minute ‘flash crash’ after rumour of Steve Jobs in hospital

By Daily Mail Reporter


<time datetime=“2011-02-12T08:46:19+0000”> 08:
46 BST, 12 February 2011 </time> </span>
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<ul><li><font 1.4em; font-weight: bold;”>Share tumble initially blamed on lukewarm sales of U.S.

company Verizon’s version of iPhone
</font></li><li><font 1.4em; font-weight: bold;”>Source of ‘CEO ailment’ story remains a mystery</font></li><li><font 1.4em; font-weight: bold;”>Steve Jobs seen at Apple HQ despite being on leave
</font></li></ul>Apple had
almost $10billion wiped off its value in just four minutes
after investors took a bite out of the tech giant.


  Market analysts blamed the flash plunge on unsubstantiated rumours that Apple founder Steve
Jobs was in hospital.
  The stock had been sailing along near
its all-time high of $360 a share on Wall Street on Thursday lunchtime when it suddenly fell to around
$350 in the space of four minutes.


<font 1.1em;”>Scroll
down for video</font>
<div class=“thinCenter”> ” > <noscript> <img > Medical leave: Steve Jobs speaks to his employees during an Apple event at the company’s headquarters in Cupertino, California, in October</div>The
mini-collapse shaved $9.9billion from Apple’s value before the stock began to rebound.

 

  <div class=“art-insert news”><h3 class=“wocc”>STEVE JOBS - A TIMELINE
</h3><div class=“ins cleared xolcc bdrcc”><ul><li>February 24,
1955
- Born in San Francisco, California</li></ul><ul><li>1976 - After dropping out of college,
he founds Apple with Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne</li></ul><ul><li>1985
- Forced out of Apple and starts the NeXT Corporation</li></ul><ul><li>1996 - Returns to his old company when Apple buys NeXT and soon becomes its CEO</li></ul><ul><li>2004 - Diagnosed
with pancreatic cancer</li></ul><ul><li>Late 2008
- Has liver transplant as part of treatment for pancreatic cancer</li></ul><ul><li>Early 2009 - Takes six months off
to recuperate</li></ul><ul><li>January 2011 - Announces he is taking a third leave of absence for medical reasons</li></ul></div></div>It came just a day after experts predicted the California-based company was on course
to leapfrog oil monolith Exxon Mobil to become the world’s most valuable firm.

 

And it left traders baffled over what triggered the dramatic blip in the company’s fortunes.

Financial analyst Andy Zaky told CNN: ‘The selling is not normal just for negative news.
There was a huge spike where dollars were being skipped
in the selling.
There’s something else. It wasn’t orderly.’  The smaller-than-expected lines
for iPhones being sold by U.S. company Verizon was
put forward initially as a possible reason for the sell-off.

  But that was swiftly disregarded amid renewed speculation over
the health of Mr Jobs, who announced last month that he was going on medical
leave.


  The importance of the innovative 55-year-old Apple
boss’s role is such that his heath has been looked upon as a bellwether to the
company’s fortunes.
  Nobody appears to know where the hospital rumour started, but he was reportedly seen at Apple’s HQ in Cupertino in recent days looking healthy.

 

  Mr Jobs was also spotted having an Indian meal in nearby Mountain View on Thursday.
He is said to be staying closely involved in the company’s affairs,
taking business meetings at home and on the
phone.
  He was treated for a rare form of pancreatic cancer in 2004 and had a liver transplant two years ago.

 

Apple has refused to comment any further about his health.  <div class=“thinCenter”> ” > <noscript> <img > In healthier times:
Mr Jobs introduces the Power Mac G4 in 1999.

He was first diagnosed as suffering from pancreatic cancer in 2004</div><div class=“clear”> </div>
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