Drexel Hamilton's Brian White predicts Apple Inc. stock will eventually hit $202.
With the expected release of the iPhone 8 this fall, Apple is only in the "early stages" of unlocking upside potential for investors, White wrote in a note to clients Monday.
"We believe Apple remains among the most underappreciated stocks in the world," CNBC.com quoted White as saying.
The analyst “raised his 12-month price forecast for Apple stock to $202 from $185, reiterating a buy rating on the shares," CNBC reported.
Apple stock closed Friday at $148.96 per share and near midday Monday was at $153.03.
"If the stock climbed to White's target (a gain of more than 35 percent), that would give the iPhone juggernaut a market value of $1.06 trillion based on its current share count of 5.2 billion from FactSet,” CNBC reported.
White's price target “marks the highest for the company among 33 Wall Street analysts who cover Apple, according to data from TipRanks,” CNBC reported. The average price target of those analysts is $159, and the lowest is $120, TipRanks said.
"Apple's valuation has been depressed for years as investors grew concerned that Apple would fall victim to the missteps of consumer electronic companies of the past," White wrote. "However, Apple has proven its resilience through its unique ability to develop hardware, software and services that work seamlessly together."
Meanwhile, Apple recently reported a surprise fall in iPhone sales for its second quarter, indicating that customers may have held back purchases in anticipation of the 10th-anniversary edition of the company's most important product later this year.
Under pressure from shareholders to hand over more of its $250 billion-plus hoard of cash and investments, Apple boosted its capital return program by $50 billion, increased its share repurchase authorization by $35 billion and raised its quarterly dividend by 10.5 percent, Reuters reported.
Apple said sold 50.76 million iPhones in its fiscal second quarter ended April 1, down from 51.19 million a year earlier.
Analysts on average had estimated iPhone sales of 52.27 million, according to financial data and analytics firm FactSet.
Apple Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri argued the decline was not as bad as it looked, given the peculiarities of how phone sales are calculated.
The company reports what are called "sell-in" figures for the iPhone, a measure of how many units it sells to retailers, rather than "sell-through" figures, which measure how many phones are actually sold to consumers.
Maestri said the company reduced the volume of inventory going through its retail channel by about 1.2 million units in the quarter, meaning the company sold about 52 million phones to customers on a sell-through basis.
Despite the dip in unit sales, iPhone revenues rose 1.2 percent in the quarter, helped by a higher average selling price.
Expectations are building ahead of Apple's 10th-anniversary iPhone range this fall, with investors hoping that the launch would help bolster sales.
Apple typically launches its new iPhones in September.
(Newsmax wires services contributed to this report).
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