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Apple shares, AAPL, drive Nasdaq to potentially record gain

Company shares were up $50, driving the Nasdaq to over 3,000 by 10 am, likely the index's biggest gain for 2012.

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An Apple Store is seen reflected in the window of a clothing store on April 24, 2012 in San Francisco, California. (Justin Sullivan/AFP/Getty Images)

NEW YORK - Yesterday’s stellar first quarter results for Apple are spreading joy on the Nasdaq today, with shares in the company up $50. According to The Associated Press, the jump in the company’s share price has driven the composite index to what could easily be its biggest gain of 2012.

Apple soared past investor expectations yesterday, posting quarterly revenues of $39.1 billion, 47 percent more than in the first quarter of 2011, nearly doubling profits over that period as well.

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Shares in the company were up more than 9 percent, or $51.61, in morning trading at $611.79. That remains below April 10’s intraday high of $644.

The Nasdaq composite index, of which Apple comprises 12 percent, the largest component, gained 67 points to rise to 3,029 just after 10 am local time, according to the AP.

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According to Bloomberg, Apple’s iPhone sales of 35.1 million in the first quarter — an 88 percent rise over Q1 in 2011 — were in large part driven by demand in China, were one in five of the smart phones was purchased.