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Apple becomes first US company to hit $2 trillion; S&P 500 sets a record: What today's news means for your money

A record close for the S&P 500 means we're now officially in a bull market. Apple set its own record as the first U.S. company to reach market cap of $2 trillion.

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New records for the S&P and Apple are making news today. Here's how the headlines could affect your money:

S&P sets new record, closing out shortest-ever bear market

The S&P 500 closed at a new high Tuesday, surpassing its previous record set Feb. 19. Effectively, it's wiped out pandemic losses and rewarded investors who stayed the course. 

The new high makes it official: The S&P is now in a bull market, or up more than 20% from a bear market low. Technically, that bull market began March 23 with the bear market's low. But it only became official on Tuesday when it set that record.

Traders expect the S&P's momentum to continue Wednesday: Target and Lowe's reported blockbuster numbers for the second quarter.

Apple reaches $2 trillion market cap

On Wednesday, Apple became the first U.S. company to reach a market cap of $2 trillion. It doubled its valuation in just over two years, having first hit the $1 trillion mark in early August 2018.

E-commerce sales jump during the pandemic

Consumers did more online shopping during the second quarter: E-commerce sales grew 31.8% compared to the first three months of 2020, according to data from the U.S. Department of Commerce released Tuesday. From April through June, shoppers spent a total $211.5 billion online.

Some of that is showing up in impressive Q2 earnings reports from big retailers like Walmart and Target. 

Shopping online can help you save money: A 2019 First Insight report found that online shoppers spent less and made fewer impulse buys than people who bought items at the store.

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Words you've heard: Market cap

Market cap, short for market capitalization, is the total dollar value of all of a company's outstanding shares of stock. You can calculate market cap by multiplying a company's current share price by its total number of outstanding shares.

Stocks generally fall into one of three categories, depending on that figure — large-cap, mid-cap, or small-cap. Large-cap companies are the most established and are typically considered less risky for investing. You'll want to find the right mix in your portfolio to stay on track with your goals.

Although the daily news can have an impact on your wallet, remember to take a long-term outlook when it comes to decisions on spending, saving, and investing.

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