Apple’s (AAPL) “Sell” Rating Reaffirmed at Stifel Nicolaus

Stifel Nicolaus reaffirmed their sell rating on shares of Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) in a report published on Wednesday morning. Stifel Nicolaus currently has a $26.00 price objective on the iPhone maker’s stock, up from their previous price objective of $22.00.

Other research analysts have also recently issued research reports about the stock. Barclays reiterated a hold rating and set a $146.00 price target on shares of Apple in a research note on Tuesday, August 15th. Vetr upgraded shares of Apple from a hold rating to a buy rating and set a $166.96 price target on the stock in a research note on Thursday, August 17th. UBS reiterated a buy rating and set a $180.00 price target on shares of Apple in a research note on Tuesday, September 12th. Nomura set a $185.00 price objective on shares of Apple and gave the company a buy rating in a research report on Monday, September 25th. Finally, KeyCorp upgraded shares of Apple from a sector weight rating to an overweight rating and raised their price objective for the company from $173.75 to $187.00 in a research report on Monday, October 16th. One equities research analyst has rated the stock with a sell rating, six have given a hold rating, forty-five have issued a buy rating and one has issued a strong buy rating to the company. The stock has a consensus rating of Buy and an average target price of $197.57.

Shares of Apple (NASDAQ AAPL) traded down $0.17 during trading on Wednesday, hitting $172.10. 15,352,205 shares of the stock traded hands, compared to its average volume of 27,233,643. The stock has a market cap of $884,490.00, a PE ratio of 18.66, a PEG ratio of 1.37 and a beta of 1.24. Apple has a 1-year low of $114.76 and a 1-year high of $176.24. The company has a quick ratio of 1.23, a current ratio of 1.28 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.73.

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) last issued its quarterly earnings results on Thursday, November 2nd. The iPhone maker reported $2.07 earnings per share for the quarter, topping the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $1.87 by $0.20. The business had revenue of $52.58 billion for the quarter, compared to analysts’ expectations of $50.71 billion. Apple had a net margin of 21.09% and a return on equity of 36.29%. The company’s revenue was up 12.2% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter last year, the company posted $1.50 EPS. equities research analysts expect that Apple will post 11.18 EPS for the current fiscal year.

The firm also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, November 16th. Shareholders of record on Monday, November 13th were paid a $0.63 dividend. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, November 10th. This represents a $2.52 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 1.46%. Apple’s payout ratio is currently 27.42%.

In other Apple news, insider Philip W. Schiller sold 56,808 shares of Apple stock in a transaction on Tuesday, October 3rd. The shares were sold at an average price of $154.70, for a total value of $8,788,197.60. The sale was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, insider Daniel J. Riccio sold 15,641 shares of Apple stock in a transaction dated Thursday, December 7th. The stock was sold at an average price of $169.69, for a total transaction of $2,654,121.29. Following the transaction, the insider now directly owns 17,341 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $2,942,594.29. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold a total of 232,967 shares of company stock valued at $37,944,683 over the last three months. Corporate insiders own 0.08% of the company’s stock.

Hedge funds have recently added to or reduced their stakes in the stock. Blue Sky Asset Management LLC purchased a new stake in Apple in the 2nd quarter valued at about $108,000. Hefty Wealth Partners raised its holdings in shares of Apple by 27.6% in the 2nd quarter. Hefty Wealth Partners now owns 804 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock valued at $115,000 after purchasing an additional 174 shares in the last quarter. FNY Managed Accounts LLC raised its holdings in shares of Apple by 852.4% in the 2nd quarter. FNY Managed Accounts LLC now owns 800 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock valued at $115,000 after purchasing an additional 716 shares in the last quarter. Private Vista LLC bought a new stake in shares of Apple in the 2nd quarter valued at about $122,000. Finally, Armbruster Capital Management Inc. raised its holdings in shares of Apple by 9.4% in the 2nd quarter. Armbruster Capital Management Inc. now owns 911 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock valued at $131,000 after purchasing an additional 78 shares in the last quarter. 59.78% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

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About Apple

Apple Inc (Apple) designs, manufactures and markets mobile communication and media devices, personal computers, and portable digital music players, and a variety of related software, services, peripherals, networking solutions, and third-party digital content and applications. The Company’s products and services include iPhone, iPad, Mac, iPod, Apple TV, a portfolio of consumer and professional software applications, the iOS and OS X operating systems, iCloud, and a variety of accessory, service and support offerings.

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