updated 12:41 pm EST, Mon December 17, 2012
Executive turmoil may be weakening confidence
Apple stock has being floating around the $500 mark in Monday trading, tracking shows. Prior to the opening of the NYSE, the stock in fact slipped to $497, but it has since gone up a few dollars to about $502. Overall, though, Apple stock has slipped about $200 since hitting an all-time peak in September.
Today's decline is being blamed on several financial institutions cutting their price targets for Apple stock. Citi, for instance, has reduced its target to $575, while Canaccord Genuity has scaled back from $800 to $750. UBS, Mizuho, and Jefferies have also downgraded Apple.
While Canaccord is expecting iPhone and iPad sales to be weaker in FY2013 and FY2014, especially in Europe, a recurring theme among analysts in the past few weeks has been concern about the executive shakeup at Apple, which has seen at least two major executives fired, and organization of duties in the company given a major overhaul. The firings were triggered by problems with labor management at Apple Stores, and the fiasco over iOS 6 Maps, which critics have complained is inferior to its predecessor, the last to use content from Google.