Don't Get Too Excited on Apple (AAPL) Given Risks of Near-Term 'Miss' - Oppenheimer

March 26, 2013 8:25 AM EDT
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Price: $120.11 +0.28%

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Just as Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL) stock is starting to get legs again, analysts at Oppenheimer are trying to dampen near-term expectations.

Oppenheimer analyst Ittai Kidron lowered his price target Tuesday from $600 to $550 and said he sees risk to near term estimates as customer push off iPhone purchases in anticipation of the next refresh.

"Like spring training, the national pastime of predicting potential iPhone/iPad release dates is picking up steam and increasingly mid-year focused," the analyst comments. "Nothing has substantiated, but as news flows, consumers will likely pause purchases awaiting the update. We see risk to consensus and are lowering our March/June estimates while raising Sept."

The firm cut FY13 EPS from $45.22 to $44.38 and FY14 from $50.20 to $49.77.

The good news, the analyst explains, is that much of the downside is in the stock price already. "Much of the revision appears built into investor expectations, and we don't see much downside pressure from a potential June miss," he said. "However, we also don't see much of a NT positive catalyst until we get closer to the product cycle or get more clarity on Apple's cash intentions."

The firm is still positive on LT fundamentals and remains comfortable with their Outperform rating.

For an analyst ratings summary and ratings history on Apple click here. For more ratings news on Apple click here.

Shares of Apple closed at $463.58 yesterday.

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