Think Twice Before Hating Apple Inc. (AAPL)

Short sellers are getting bullish about Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). Looking at the sentiment indicator for the AAPL stock we see that the short-interest ratio is at 1 while the average analyst recommendations at 2.2 suggests buying these shares. Between December 14 and December 31, the total number of shorted shares amounted to 45.28 million shares. That was 0% less than the total of 45.28 million shares in the space of prior two weeks, which means more traders or funds betting that the stock will go up. Average daily volume for Apple Inc. at the December 31st settlement jumped to 51,387,635, as compared to 42,783,191 at the December 14th report. That brought days to cover to a 5.51% decrease from the 1.058361 days to cover recorded at the prior short interest data release.

Apple Inc. (AAPL) will probably climb 17.35 percent over the next 12 months, according to price target estimates compiled by finviz. Meanwhile, they have set a $260-month high price target. This represents a whopping 70.73 percent increase from where shares are trading today. The 12-month median price target assigned by the analysts stands at $180, which represents a return potential of 18.2 percent when compared to the closing price of the stock of $152.29 on Friday, January 11. The lowest price target for the stock is $140 — slightly more than -8.07 percent from AAPL’s current share price.

The stock is currently hovering around the first support level of $151.3. Below this, the next support is placed in the zone of $150.31. Till the time, the AAPL stock trades above this level, bulls have nothing to fear. On momentum oscillators front, ‘RSI’ has touched 39.06 on daily chart, which may remain a cause for comfort. If the price breaks below $150.31 level on closing basis, then we may see more profit booking and the stock may show further weakness. On the flipside, hitting the $153.49 mark may result into a pull-back move towards $154.69 level.

On 11th of January, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares ended lower after a volatile session. The shares dropped -1.51 points or -0.98 percent at $152.29 with a light trade volume of 26.907 million shares. After opening the session at $152.88, the shares went as high as $153.7 and as low as $151.51, the range within which the stock’s price traded throughout the day. The firm is left with a market cap of $730 billion and now has 4.79 billion shares outstanding. Apple Inc. (AAPL) stock has lost -9.69 percent of market value in 21 trading days.

AAPL stock has a trailing 3-year beta of 1.13, offering the possibility of a higher rate of return, but also posing more risk. The portion of a company’s profit allocated to each outstanding share of common stock was $12.15 a share in the trailing twelve months. The stock’s value has fallen -3.46 percent year to date (YTD) against a decline of -12.62 percent in 12 month’s time. The company’s shares still trade -34.77 percent away from its 1-year high of $233.47 and 7.25 percent up from 52-week low of $142.00. The average consensus rating on the company is 2.2, on a scale where 5 equates to a unanimous sell rating. In short, the mean analyst recommendations are calling this stock a sell.

Shares of Apple Inc. (AAPL) are trading at a P/E ratio of 14.34 times earnings reported for the past 12 months. The industry AAPL operates in has an average P/E of 6.17. Its P/E ratio went as low as 12.45X and as high as 18.49 over the 5-year span. Further, it is sporting a 2.75 on the Price-to-Sales ratio. Compare this with the industry average P/S of 1.23. 38.3 percent is the gross profit margin for Apple Inc. and operating margin sits at 26.7 percent. Along with this, the net profit margin is 22.4 percent.

Let’s take a look at some insider activity at Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and see the pattern. The earliest insider trade took place on 11/19/2018. Kondo Chris parted with a total of 3.41 thousand shares of company at average share price of $190. The total for the sales was set at $647.52 thousand. After this transaction, the Principal Accounting Officer account balance stood at 8.94 thousand shares. The stock lost -19.85 percent since that insider sale. On 10/05/2018, Ahrendts Angela J, Senior Vice President, sold 64.19 thousand shares at a price per share of $230.89. This removed 14.82 million shares from the insider’s fortune and the stock saw a -34.04 percent retreat in value since the news became public. This transaction left 66.34 thousand shares in the Senior Vice President account.

On 10/04/2018, Senior Vice President, CFO Maestri Luca performed a sale transaction worth $22.91 million. This sale at $228.56 each has eliminated 100.25 thousand shares from the insider’s portfolio position. Meanwhile, shares have recorded -33.37 percent decrease since the transaction was reported. The insider now is left with 27.32 thousand shares remaining in the account. Williams Jeffrey E, who performs the COO job, sold 62 thousand shares for $14.4 million. The disposal occurred on 10/03/2018 was priced at $232.33 per share. The share price plunged -34.45 percent since the reporting date. Williams Jeffrey E now left with a stake of 108.09 thousand AAPL stock worth $16.46 million after the insider selling.