Apple shares drop after Mizuho downgrade
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FILE PHOTO -- The audience assembles before the start of Apple's annual developer conference in San Jose, California, U.S. June 5, 2017. REUTERS/Stephen Lam/File Photo
By Chuck Mikolajczak
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Apple shares were stung by a broker downgrade for a second straight week on Monday, sending the stock lower to keep the tech sector under pressure for a second straight session.
Mizuho Securities cut its rating on the iPhone maker to "neutral" from "buy," and reduced its price target to $150 from $160 per share.
"The stock has meaningfully outperformed on a year-to-date basis and we believe enthusiasm around the upcoming product cycle is fully captured at current levels, with limited upside to estimates from here on out," said analyst Abhey Lamba.
Last week, Pacific Crest Securities lowered its rating on the stock to "sector weight."
Of the 46 analysts covering Apple, 11 now have a hold rating, according to Thomson Reuters data. There is one "strong sell" rating on the stock and the remainder are "buy" or higher. The median price target of $160 is up from $145 three months ago.
Apple shares were down 3.6 percent to $143.59, the biggest drag on each of the three major Wall Street indexes.
Despite the recent decline, Apple shares are still up more than 23 percent for the year. The stock has added about 185 points to the Dow's climb this year, behind only Boeing (NYSE: BA), McDonald's <.MCD.N> and 3M Co (NYSE: MMM).
Tech shares had come under heavy pressure on Friday, as the S&P technology sector <.SPLRCT> dropped 2.7 percent and were down more than 2 percent on Monday, to put the sector on track for its worst two-day performance in almost a year.
Apple slumped on Friday after Bloomberg News reported that iPhones launched later this year will use modem chips with slower download speeds than some rival smartphones.
Reuters reported on Monday Apple and computing giant Dell Inc will join a Foxconn-led consortium bidding for Toshiba Corp's <6502.T> highly prized chip unit.
(Reporting by Chuck Mikolajczak; Editing by Bernard Orr and Nick Zieminski)
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