Apple is World’s Second Most Valuable Brand After Google !

Apple‘s brand is worth $39.3 billion, or 33% more than it was at the start of the year, according to a study from consulting firm Brand Finance.

The London-based company looks at a company’s cash flow and other financial metrics to assess the worth of its trademarks and other intellectual property. At the top of the heap is Google, whose IP is worth $48.3 billion — and likely more after Thursday, when the search giant bought another treasure trove of patents from IBM.

Microsoft slipped to third place, a hair’s breadth below Apple at $39 billion — although Windows 8 may change that equation.

This marks the first time, according to the report, that the world’s top four most valuable brands are all tech companies. Coming in just below them: Walmart, GE, AT&T and Coca-Cola. A couple of banks with slipping reputations — Wells Fargo and Bank of America — round out the top 10.

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