CHART OF THE DAY: Google's Long Road Back To $500

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Google shares traded over $500 for several hours today, for the first time since August, 2008.

Since then, the company has gone through two significant disruptions: First, the recession. Second, an ongoing makeover that’s seen the company replace several top employees, most notably former sales boss Tim Armstrong, who is now the CEO of AOL.

Special prize goes to Merriman Curhan Ford analyst Richard Fetyko, who initiated coverage with a SELL rating on Nov. 21 at $260, just days before the stock’s 52-week low. Since then, shares have more than doubled. (Update: Fetyko writes us, admitting his timing “was indeed bad.” But credit him for seeing the light and upgrading to stock to “neutral” at $328 and “buy” at $342.)

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