Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) Stock Rating Lowered by Zacks Investment Research

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 (AAPL) traded down $0.90 during trading on Monday, hitting $176.19. The company’s stock had a trading volume of 24,975,146 shares, compared to its average volume of 26,140,000. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.73, a current ratio of 1.28 and a quick ratio of 1.23. Apple has a 52-week low of $118.22 and a 52-week high of $179.39. The company has a market cap of $904,610.00, a PE ratio of 19.17, a price-to-earnings-growth ratio of 1.45 and a beta of 1.23.

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.

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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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