Business, Economics and Jobs

Fortune 500 list: Exxon Mobil is No. 1


A driver fuels her SUV at an Exxon Mobil gas station in Chicago on July 29, 2010.


John Gress

Exxon Mobil is the United States’ top-earning company, according to Fortune’s annual Fortune 500 list, published in the May 21, 2012, issue of the magazine and released today. The list ranks the 500 largest US companies by total revenue.

The Irving, Texas-based oil company, No. 2 on last year’s list, bumped Wal-Mart down one position to claim the top spot, the San Jose Mercury News reported. Two other oil companies – San Ramon, Calif.-based Chevron (No. 3) and Houston-based ConocoPhillips (No. 4) – and General Motors rounded out the top five.

According to Fortune, rising oil prices, especially during the last quarter of 2011, helped boost Exxon Mobil’s 2011 revenues 28 percent to $452.9 billion.

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At No. 10, Palo Alto, Calif.-based Hewlett-Packard is the top-earning Silicon Valley tech company, according to the San Jose Mercury News. Cupertino, Calif.-based Apple Inc. occupies No. 17 on the list, a big leap from the previous year, when it was No. 35. Brisk sales of an upgraded version of its iPad tablet at the end of 2011 boosted its revenue, Fortune reported.

"Corporate America is doing great right now," Andy Serwer, Fortune’s managing editor, said today in a "CBS This Morning" interview. "They've really come out of the downturn, doing things right. They're in good shape. A lot of that has to do with the fact that they've cut back. They've cut costs during the downturn, meaning layoffs quite frankly. That's why profits are so high."

According to CBS News, the 500 companies on Fortune’s list made a combined profit of $824.5 billion in 2011, 16.4 percent higher than their combined profits in 2010.

Here are the top 10 companies on this year's Fortune 500 list:

1. Exxon Mobil
2. Wal-Mart Stores
3. Chevron
4. ConocoPhillips
5. General Motors
6. General Electric
7. Berkshire Hathaway
8. Fannie Mae
9. Ford Motor
10. Hewlett-Packard

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