Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) was upgraded by Zacks Investment Research from a “hold” rating to a “buy” rating in a research note issued to investors on Tuesday. The firm currently has a $132.00 price objective on the iPhone maker’s stock. Zacks Investment Research’s target price suggests a potential upside of 12.29% from the stock’s current price.
According to Zacks, “Apple has been taking initiatives to strengthen its foothold in China. The company recently announced plans to set up another R&D facility in the country. Last month, Apple unveiled the much-awaited iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus and a newer version of Apple Watch. The company also provided updates on Apple Music, App Store and Apple Watch in addition to the software upgrades. Apple remains optimistic about growth in regions like India and a decent rebound in China. A loyal customer base and a strong ecosystem are the other positives. However, in the near term, macroeconomic headwinds in some key regions amid increasing competition remain a concern. Also, the company is embroiled in tax issues for its Ireland operations, which remains an overhang on its financials. Estimates have largely remained stable ahead of the company's fourth quarter fiscal 2016 earnings release.”
A number of other equities analysts have also recently commented on the company. Piper Jaffray Cos. reiterated an “overweight” rating and set a $153.00 price target on shares of Apple in a report on Tuesday, July 26th. Credit Suisse Group AG reiterated an “outperform” rating and set a $150.00 price target on shares of Apple in a report on Thursday, September 15th. Goldman Sachs Group Inc. reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $124.00 price target on shares of Apple in a report on Wednesday, October 12th. Citigroup Inc. lifted their price target on Apple from $120.00 to $130.00 and gave the stock a “buy” rating in a report on Friday, September 30th. Finally, Needham & Company LLC reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $150.00 price target on shares of Apple in a report on Wednesday, July 20th. Three investment analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seven have assigned a hold rating, forty-four have given a buy rating and two have issued a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. The stock currently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $127.05.
Shares of Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) opened at 117.55 on Tuesday. The firm has a market capitalization of $633.41 billion, a PE ratio of 13.71 and a beta of 1.22. Apple has a 12-month low of $89.47 and a 12-month high of $123.82. The company’s 50-day moving average price is $111.86 and its 200-day moving average price is $103.64.
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) last posted its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, July 26th. The iPhone maker reported $1.42 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.38 by $0.04. Apple had a return on equity of 37.89% and a net margin of 21.70%. The business earned $42.36 billion during the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $42.35 billion. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $1.85 earnings per share. Apple’s quarterly revenue was down 14.6% on a year-over-year basis. Analysts anticipate that Apple will post $8.26 EPS for the current year.
In other Apple news, insider Johny Srouji sold 9,827 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, August 15th. The shares were sold at an average price of $108.44, for a total transaction of $1,065,639.88. Following the completion of the sale, the insider now directly owns 116,369 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $12,619,054.36. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through this link. Also, SVP D Bruce Sewell sold 23,305 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Friday, August 5th. The shares were sold at an average price of $107.49, for a total transaction of $2,505,054.45. Following the sale, the senior vice president now directly owns 239,329 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $25,725,474.21. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders own 0.08% of the company’s stock.
A number of hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in AAPL. Penserra Capital Management LLC boosted its stake in shares of Apple by 39.2% in the second quarter. Penserra Capital Management LLC now owns 1,080 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $103,000 after buying an additional 304 shares in the last quarter. Weaver C. Barksdale & Associates Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Apple during the third quarter worth approximately $122,000. Delphi Private Advisors LLC boosted its stake in shares of Apple by 5.0% in the second quarter. Delphi Private Advisors LLC now owns 1,462 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $140,000 after buying an additional 69 shares in the last quarter. Hussman Strategic Advisors Inc. acquired a new stake in shares of Apple during the second quarter worth approximately $143,000. Finally, River & Mercantile Asset Management LLP boosted its stake in shares of Apple by 22.8% in the second quarter. River & Mercantile Asset Management LLP now owns 1,800 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $172,000 after buying an additional 334 shares in the last quarter. 56.41% of the stock is owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
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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