updated 12:33 am EDT, Tue June 10, 2014
New value-priced stock expected to top all-time high in near future
On its first day of trading on a split-adjusted basis, shares of AAPL rose 1.6 percent to close at $93.70, a new 52-week high. The stock is now just $7.02 per share away from matching its all-time high of (adjusted) $100.72, which it last reached in September of 2012. The stock also reached a 52-week intraday high of $93.88 on Monday, and is presently up seven cents in after-hours trading. Analysts are already speculating about when the stock will match its all-time high.
CNBC is reporting that some analysts continue to side with CEO Tim Cook, noting the confidence of recent executive statements and the progress made in the last year on both iOS and OS X after last week's Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco. While some are concerned over the lack of new hardware announcements or entries into new product categories, most analysts are now convinced that both will happen in time for the holiday buying season, alongside the expected "iPhone 6" and latest iPad models.
"The iPhone 6 launch is a big retail event and splitting the stock obviously makes it more within reach of the retail investor, said GVA Research analyst David Garrity. "You could get a pop in the stock and pay for your iPhone at the same time." Tim Lesko of Granite Investment Advisors believes the stock will reach $100 per share in the next six to eight weeks, saying that there's "a lot to like about what is current in Apple, and they continue to give us great signals that there's a lot to like about what's [to come]."
Lesko added that he considers AAPL "a really cheap stock" at present. Garrity concurs, and predicts the stock will set its all-time record ahead of the launch of the next iPhone. Apple remains the world's most valuable publicly-traded company, with a current market value of $564.98 bllion -- some $8 billion of that added in just the past week. The next nearest company is Exxon Mobil, at $435.96 billion.
Analysts are taking note of the numerous fronts on which Apple is making what, from an investor viewpoint, is progress: continued promises of new and revamped products arriving this year; growth of the iPhone in some key markets, including Japan, China and North America; and moves to increase investor payouts and scale the value of the stock through a recently-increased buyback program. Early customer and developer excitement in reaction to previews of iOS 8, OS X Yosemite and the new Swift programming language has given pundits and investors increased confidence that Apple is not done innovating or continuing to exploit new markets.