Apple Stock Price Target Cut On Lower IPhone Sales Outlook

Apple Inc.'s stock price target was cut at Pacific Crest, which cited "stable, but uninspiring" demand for the technology giant's new iPhones. Analyst Andy Hargreaves kept his rating at overweight, saying the stock is still "too cheap," but trimmed his price target to $127, or 16% above Friday's closing price of $109.90, frmo $129. "While we believe Apple has slightly reduced its forecast to suppliers, the change is not drastic and is mostly a return to forecasts in place prior to an increase in October," Hargreaves wrote in a note to clients. Still he cut, his estimate for fiscal first-quarter iPhone sales to 76.8 million units from 78.3 million, and his fiscal 2017 estimate to 225.0 million from 231.9 million. Hargreaves slashed his fiscal 2017 earnings-per-share outlook to $8.58 from $8.94, compared with the FactSet consensus of $9.00. He said he believes the iPhone estimate changes, recent currency moves, concerns over trade policy and the potential for costs in the next iPhone cycle to increase all pose threats to gross margins. "This is likely to act as an overhang that reduces optimism around near-term upside potential," Hargreaves said. The stock, which edged up 0.3% in premarket trade, has lost 1% since the election through Friday, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has rallied 4.6%.

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