The 15 Most Expensive Stocks

Investors use many metrics to determine the real value of a company’s stock. One common evaluation is a stock’s share price and how that has performed over time. While other valuation metrics can be used, at this stage in the eight-year bull market there are many companies with share prices on their way to $1,000. A few even have hit the $1,000 mark.

24/7 Wall St. wanted to review 15 of the highest price stocks that trade on the New York Stock Exchange and the Nasdaq. What is interesting is that of the 15 highest priced stocks, almost all have market caps well over $1 billion. Some are very well-known companies, while others may only be familiar to those who work as competitors in the same industry.

We screened for the highest NYSE and Nasdaq share prices using data from FINVIZ, but no stocks with over-the-counter or pink sheet listings were considered for this review. We have included a brief description of each company included and how the stock’s performance has been so far in 2017. Also included are trading ranges and valuation, as well as the Thomson Reuters consensus analyst price target.

Some companies in this stage of the bull market just want to have a higher rather than a lower share price. It may be a sense of pride, or it could even be Warren Buffett envy. One effort to curb the impact of having such a high-priced stock is simply to create a new class of shares, a strategy that was used by Berkshire Hathaway.

Other companies try to avoid having high share prices so that retail investors might be more inclined to own their shares. To accomplish an instantly lower share price without changing any of the fundamentals of a company, the most common strategy is to announce a stock split. For instance, a theoretical four-for-one split of a $400 stock would magically turn 100 shares into 400 shares, while quadrupling the number of shares outstanding. Apple split its stock seven-for-one ahead of becoming a member of the Dow, and its shares now would be priced over $1,000 had it not done so.

Berkshire Hathaway
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Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE: BRK-A) has stayed relatively flat in 2017, with the stock up only 1.2% year to date. As we all know, Warren Buffet is at the helm of this mega-corporation, and it is the most expensive stock on the market far and away. Berkshire Hathaway acts as a holding company for numerous businesses that deal in practically every field, with subsidiaries such as BNSF, Precision Castparts, Lubrizol, MidAmerican Energy, GEICO and on and on. Investors can also buy Berkshire Hathaway B shares for $165 or so. The A shares have traded in a 52-week range of $205,074.00 to $266,445.00, and the market cap is $406.3 billion. The consensus analyst price target is generally from too few analysts to be relied upon, but it was last seen at $282,350.00.

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Seaboard Corp. (NYSE: SEB) shares are relatively flat on the year as well, up only 1.5%. Seaboard operates as a diverse agribusiness, from pork and turkeys to sugar and biofuels. The company also acts as a commodity trader and a marine shipper worldwide. The stock has traded in a 52-week range of $2,590.00 to $4,545.00, with a total market cap of $4.7 billion.

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