Apple analysts have grown more positive on the company’s prospects, pointing to the upcoming launch of a 5G version of the iPhone, as well as continued growth in its services business.
The stock has been in a strong uptrend for weeks, gaining nearly 60% off a March low and closing Wednesday at record levels. The gains have given Apple a market capitalisation above $1.5-trillion, making it the largest US stock.
BofA on Thursday raised its price target to a Street-high view of US$390, from $340, and reiterated its buy rating. Analyst Wamsi Mohan expects product revenue “will grow 20% next year from iPhone and wearables”, and touted the company’s “continued penetration into its installed base, large net cash, and continued strong capital returns”.
Shares of Apple dipped 1.5% in pre-market trading on Thursday. This follows a four-day advance of more than 9%.
Earlier, Wells Fargo Securities raised its own price target, writing that data for China mobile phone registrations pointed to a “solid post-Covid recovery”. The firm reiterated its overweight rating, expecting investors will continue to view Apple “as a favoured high-quality large cap name”, especially given the anticipated 5G iPhone.
Also on Thursday, HSBC upgraded its view on Apple to hold, removing one of the rare sell-equivalent ratings on the stock. The firm expects to see a “successful” 5G iPhone launch in the third quarter of 2020, and also noted growth in Apple’s services business.
Currently, 29 of the firms tracked by Bloomberg have the equivalent of a buy rating on Apple’s stock, compared to 12 with a hold rating. Just four advocate selling the stock. The average price target is about $323, up from roughly $305 at the end of April, although the current average is below Apple’s most recent close of $352.84. — Reported by Ryan Vlastelica, (c) 2020 Bloomberg LP