Thursday, April 26, 2012

Apple vs Microsoft Stock Performance

I decided to enter The Tableau Interactive Biz Viz Contest and since I needed to use a financial data set, I chose to compare Apple vs Microsoft Stock Performance.

Having been a big Microsoft fan back in the 90's, I thought it'd be interesting to compare Microsoft against the hottest company at the moment, Apple. Both companies have had interesting peaks and valleys. While Microsoft has been on the decline, Apple has been on a tear.

It was interesting to look at the historical min, max, average stock price, and average volume of the two stocks. I then calculated the % daily difference to see the changes in close price compared to the prior day. Then I took it a step further by looking at the % difference by year using the adjusted closing (which takes into account any dividends/stock splits). It was neat to see the % difference by month too.

Another way to look at the data was to construct a candlestick chart to see the high, low, open, and close each day. And to see the difference between high and low and open and close.

Big thanks to the Tableau Viz gallery for the example on how to construct a candlestick chart! I definitely learned so much building this data visualization and that's probably the best part about this contest.

Key Findings:
  • In 2005, Apple's year to year change was 162.8%!
  • In 1987, Microsoft's year to year change was 190.1%!
  • Highest stock price for Microsoft ever was $180.38 on March 26, 1999.
  • Lowest stock price ever for Microsoft was $14.87 on March 6, 2009.
  • Highest stock price for Apple ever was $644 on April 10th of this year! Sadly, the stock did not end up closing at $644, but at $628.44.
  • Lowest stock price ever for Apple was $12.72 on April 17, 2003. They've come a long way since then!
  • The volume for Microsoft's stock was over 1 billion back on March 13, 1986. Wow! 
* All historical stock price data taken from Yahoo! Finance.

Enjoy the visualization!