Amazon Now Runner-Up on Value Ladder

Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) has passed Alphabet (NASDAQ: GOOGL) and now trails just Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) among the list of the world's most valuable companies.

The e-commerce giant rose 2.7% on Tuesday lifting its stock market value to $768 billion. Alphabet, the parent of Google, fell 0.4% and is now valued at $762.5 billion.

While the U.S. tech mega-caps have rallied in the past year, Amazon's performance has dwarfed them all, with the stock surging 85% over the past 12 months, including 35% to start 2018.

Investors have been piling into Amazon, betting that the company's growing and very profitable cloud computing business will provide the cash needed for investments in original content, physical stores and continuing to build data centers and warehouses.

Latest developments concerning Amazon is that it is reportedly thinking about purchasing locations from the now-bankrupt Toys R Us, according to reports.

By acquiring the old stores, Amazon would be expanding its physical footprint from the largely internet-based presence it currently holds. This certainly seems to be the direction in which Amazon is heading currently given its $13.7-billion purchase of organic grocery retailer Whole Foods, along with its 450 stores across North America, last August.

Meanwhile, Facebook's (NASDAQ: FB) plunge has dropped the social network's market value below Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE: BRK.A).

Facebook, now the seventh most valuable company, has lost more than 9% of its market capitalization in the past two days after revelations on Friday and over the weekend that Cambridge Analytica had misused data tied to 50 million Facebook users.

Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) is the fourth biggest company by market cap, followed by China's Tencent.

Amazon shares began Wednesday down $9.89 to $1,576.06