The Dow Jones Industrial Average, which started way back in 1896, is one of the most important financial indicators in the world. For the 30 companies that make up the average, it's a mark of prestige, and when companies join or leave it's a big deal.
Well, the next big deal is happening March 19 when Apple replaces AT&T on the Dow. Strangely, this had little to do with Apple's $736 billion market capitalization compared to AT&T's $175 billion.
What actually happened was that both Apple and Visa, another Dow company, both had stock splits. Apple's 7-to-1 stock split back in June brought its media price into a good range for the Dow. Visa's upcoming 4-to-1 stock split creates a depression in the technology portion of the Dow, which Apple fills nicely.
As for why AT&T is the one to go? It happens to have the one of the lowest prices of the 30 Dow companies. Sorry, AT&T; better luck next time.
After the news, Apple's stock went up and AT&T's went down, predictably. Of course, we'll have to see how Apple's stock fares next week when investors and consumers get their first official look at the Apple Watch.
Stay tuned for my coverage of the potentially historic Apple event.