Apple's Stock Bounces Sharply Off Early Lows, As Analyst Boosts Price Target

Apple Inc.'s stock bounced sharply off earlier lows to post a 0.2% gain in afternoon trade Monday, with J.P. Morgan raising its price target to reflect a potential for a further 17% gain from current levels. The stock was down as much as 1.4% at the intraday low of $138.62, which was hit within minutes of the open, but was last trading just 0.4% below its March 20 record close of $141.46. J.P. Morgan analyst Rod Hall said he "materially" raised his fiscal 2018 earnings and unit sales estimates because of what he believes will be "high pent-up replacement demand heading into the 10th anniversary iPhone cycle this year." He said his analysis suggest the average relevant base unit age will be about 6.4 quarters at the end of September, the highest seen in four years following two years of weak replacement behavior. He boosted his fiscal 2018 earnings-per-share estimate to $4.43 from $4.23, and bumped up his unit sales forecast to 260 million units from 245 million units. Apple's stock has run up 22% year to date, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average has gained 3.9%.

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