Bank of America Boosts Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) Price Target to $240.00

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) had its target price hoisted by Bank of America from $230.00 to $240.00 in a report released on Wednesday morning, BenzingaRatingsTable reports. The firm currently has a buy rating on the iPhone maker’s stock.

A number of other equities research analysts have also commented on AAPL. Wedbush reiterated an outperform rating and issued a $235.00 target price on shares of Apple in a research report on Monday, July 8th. Maxim Group upped their target price on Apple from $197.00 to $217.00 and gave the company a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday, May 1st. BTIG Research upped their target price on Apple to $234.00 and gave the company a buy rating in a research report on Wednesday, May 1st. Deutsche Bank upped their target price on Apple from $205.00 to $210.00 and gave the company a hold rating in a research report on Wednesday. Finally, HSBC set a $174.00 target price on Apple and gave the company a sell rating in a research report on Monday, May 20th. Four analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, seventeen have assigned a hold rating, twenty-five have given a buy rating and one has given a strong buy rating to the company’s stock. Apple presently has an average rating of Hold and an average target price of $217.49.

Shares of AAPL traded down $4.41 during mid-day trading on Wednesday, hitting $204.02. 40,831,241 shares of the company traded hands, compared to its average volume of 20,916,860. Apple has a 1-year low of $142.00 and a 1-year high of $233.47. The company has a debt-to-equity ratio of 0.88, a current ratio of 1.50 and a quick ratio of 1.26. The company has a market capitalization of $980.21 billion, a P/E ratio of 17.13, a PEG ratio of 1.80 and a beta of 1.25. The firm’s 50 day simple moving average is $202.58.

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) last posted its quarterly earnings data on Tuesday, July 30th. The iPhone maker reported $2.18 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, beating the Thomson Reuters’ consensus estimate of $2.10 by $0.08. The firm had revenue of $53.81 billion for the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $53.39 billion. Apple had a net margin of 21.50% and a return on equity of 52.13%. The company’s revenue for the quarter was up 1.0% compared to the same quarter last year. During the same quarter in the prior year, the company posted $2.34 earnings per share. On average, sell-side analysts predict that Apple will post 11.56 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.

Apple declared that its board has approved a stock buyback plan on Tuesday, April 30th that permits the company to repurchase $75.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization permits the iPhone maker to purchase up to 7.6% of its shares through open market purchases. Shares repurchase plans are generally an indication that the company’s board believes its shares are undervalued.

The company also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which will be paid on Thursday, August 15th. Investors of record on Monday, August 12th will be paid a $0.77 dividend. This represents a $3.08 annualized dividend and a yield of 1.51%. The ex-dividend date is Friday, August 9th. Apple’s dividend payout ratio is currently 25.86%.

Hedge funds and other institutional investors have recently bought and sold shares of the stock. Semmax Financial Advisors Inc. acquired a new position in Apple in the 4th quarter valued at $50,000. Avondale Wealth Management raised its stake in Apple by 25.4% in the 2nd quarter. Avondale Wealth Management now owns 316 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock valued at $63,000 after purchasing an additional 64 shares during the last quarter. NuWave Investment Management LLC raised its stake in Apple by 2,245.0% in the 2nd quarter. NuWave Investment Management LLC now owns 469 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock valued at $93,000 after purchasing an additional 449 shares during the last quarter. Horan Securities Inc. raised its stake in Apple by 64.2% in the 2nd quarter. Horan Securities Inc. now owns 565 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock valued at $112,000 after purchasing an additional 221 shares during the last quarter. Finally, INR Advisory Services LLC acquired a new position in Apple in the 4th quarter valued at $124,000. 58.66% of the stock is owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

About Apple

Apple Inc designs, manufactures, and markets mobile communication and media devices, and personal computers. It also sells various related software, services, accessories, and third-party digital content and applications. The company offers iPhone, a line of smartphones; iPad, a line of multi-purpose tablets; and Mac, a line of desktop and portable personal computers, as well as iOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS operating systems.

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