Zacks Investment Research downgraded shares of Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) from a buy rating to a hold rating in a research note issued to investors on Monday, January 8th.
According to Zacks, “Apple shares have vastly outperformed the S&P 500, in the past one year. The company is benefiting from steady iPhone sales, spurt in Services segment and a resurgence in Mac and iPad sales. The company is anticipated to benefit from the strong demand of iPhone X in mature markets, which will help it to sustain momentum in the near term. Going ahead, we believe foray into fast-growing technologies like autonomous vehicle, artificial intelligence (AI) & AR/VR are long-term drivers. Estimates have remained stable ahead of the company's Q1 earnings release. The company has positive record of earnings surprises in recent quarters. However, the new iPhone X at $999 is quite pricey, particularly for cost sensitive markets like India. Intensifying competition from cheaper Chinese handset-makers remains a concern.”
Other research analysts also recently issued research reports about the company. Nomura set a $175.00 target price on Apple and gave the stock a neutral rating in a research note on Tuesday, December 19th. Instinet downgraded Apple from a buy rating to a neutral rating and set a $175.00 target price for the company. in a research note on Tuesday, December 19th. Loop Capital reaffirmed a buy rating and issued a $200.00 price target on shares of Apple in a report on Friday, December 22nd. UBS Group set a $190.00 price target on Apple and gave the company a buy rating in a report on Monday, November 27th. Finally, Vetr cut Apple from a buy rating to a hold rating and set a $178.70 price target on the stock. in a report on Thursday, November 23rd. One research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, nine have given a hold rating, forty have given a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The company presently has an average rating of Buy and a consensus price target of $198.94.
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) last released its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 2nd. The iPhone maker reported $2.07 EPS for the quarter, beating analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.87 by $0.20. The business had revenue of $52.58 billion during the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $50.71 billion. Apple had a return on equity of 36.29% and a net margin of 21.09%. Apple’s quarterly revenue was up 12.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same period in the prior year, the firm posted $1.50 EPS. sell-side analysts expect that Apple will post 11.18 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
In other news, insider Daniel J. Riccio sold 15,641 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Tuesday, November 14th. The stock was sold at an average price of $172.35, for a total value of $2,695,726.35. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 39,682 shares in the company, valued at $6,839,192.70. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available at this link. Also, insider Johny Srouji sold 10,368 shares of the stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, November 24th. The stock was sold at an average price of $174.68, for a total value of $1,811,082.24. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now owns 81,560 shares in the company, valued at $14,246,900.80. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 128,412 shares of company stock valued at $22,115,155. 0.06% of the stock is owned by corporate insiders.
Large investors have recently made changes to their positions in the stock. YHB Investment Advisors Inc. boosted its position in Apple by 7.6% during the 2nd quarter. YHB Investment Advisors Inc. now owns 136,189 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock valued at $19,614,000 after acquiring an additional 9,663 shares in the last quarter. Lederer & Associates Investment Counsel CA boosted its position in shares of Apple by 2.1% in the 2nd quarter. Lederer & Associates Investment Counsel CA now owns 37,336 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $5,377,000 after purchasing an additional 779 shares in the last quarter. Empirical Financial Services LLC boosted its position in shares of Apple by 23.9% in the 2nd quarter. Empirical Financial Services LLC now owns 21,558 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $3,105,000 after purchasing an additional 4,154 shares in the last quarter. Carnick & Kubik Group LLC boosted its position in shares of Apple by 14.4% in the 2nd quarter. Carnick & Kubik Group LLC now owns 20,744 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $2,987,000 after purchasing an additional 2,612 shares in the last quarter. Finally, GenTrust LLC boosted its position in shares of Apple by 1,022.9% in the 2nd quarter. GenTrust LLC now owns 34,315 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $4,942,000 after purchasing an additional 31,259 shares in the last quarter. 60.19% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
Apple Company Profile
Apple Inc (Apple) designs, manufactures and markets mobile communication and media devices, personal computers, and portable digital music players, and a variety of related software, services, peripherals, networking solutions, and third-party digital content and applications. The Company’s products and services include iPhone, iPad, Mac, iPod, Apple TV, a portfolio of consumer and professional software applications, the iOS and OS X operating systems, iCloud, and a variety of accessory, service and support offerings.
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