Apple's stock crossed the $20 mark in yesterday's trading, closing at $21.37. The last time Apple shares were consistently above $20 was in mid-July.

The shares also held their value on the extended-trading market, closing at $21.32. This 7.71 per cent rise in the value of Apple's stock comes on a day in which Nasdaq as a whole climbed 2 per cent. Investors are reportedly buoyed by promises of super-fast processors made by Intel yesterday, as well as recent events in Afghanistan.

Bright outlook Renewed optimism on Wall Street also had a positive impact on many Apple partners. Microsoft climbed 0.65 per cent, closing at $65.14; Adobe climbed 5.37 per cent, closing at $34.93. Adobe-rival Macromedia also climbed 5.92 per cent, closing at $24.33; Corel, which offers several Mac OS X-compatible creative products, climbed closing up 0.79 per cent on the day, closing at $2.55.

Apple's AIM alliance partners also fared well. Motorola climbed 1.64 per cent ($17.96). IBM closed up 0.98 per cent at $116.33.

There's good news too for semiconductor manufacturers. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing hit $16.60, after raising its 2001 earnings outlook by 55 per cent, to 9.35 billion New Taiwan dollars ($270 million) due to a recent surge in orders. HP closed at $21.13, a rise of 19 cents.

Apple has released no details of how its retail locations fared over the crucial Thanksgiving shopping weekend, but reports indicate that its stores performed well, albeit in a depressed economy. The company's bottom-line for the weekend is expected to benefit from sales at the four retail outlets it opened in the period – in San Diego, San Jose, Buffalo, New York State and Miami. Apple now has 22 retail outlets, with two more scheduled for opening before the end of the year, and a 25th location also promised before the year's end.