Business magazine Forbes has recognized Apple as one of its top 400 Platinum companies in terms of its five-year financial performance.

Apple's performance in the period bucks the trend in comparison to the rest of the computer industry, meaning the company comes in at number 65 in Forbes' best 400 big-company list.

Apple's return on capital investment is an average 8.8 per cent over five years. However, Forbes recognizes a 29 per cent downward shift in Apple's stock price during the year to date.

Forbes also declares former executive board member Larry Ellison as the second richest American in 2000 - Bill Gates is the richest. Apple CEO Steve Jobs shows as the eleventh best paid CEO in 2002, down from ninth place in 2001.

Forbes says: "In another daunting year for business, these Forbes 400 Platinum companies - all with revenue more than $1 billion - showed the resilience to rise above their peers. To create this prestigious list we looked across 23 industry groups and found big companies with the best aggregate scores for both long- and short-term financial returns."

The business bible explains: "Membership in the Platinum 400 is no guarantee of future success, but the stocks on last year's list had a median loss of only one per cent over the past 12 months."