Goldman Sachs on Apple stock

Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (NYSE:GS) has released its list of the most common stocks held in the top ten of the world’s most important hedge funds. Perhaps unsurprisingly the number one spot on the list was occupied by Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). According to the list 106 funds list Apple in their top ten of holdings.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is followed by Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) in the list with Express Scripts (NASDAQ:ESRX) in third place. The top five is completed by Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) and Qualcomm Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOMM).

Apple’s shares have been under performing recently in the eyes of many investors. Some of that has to do with the general malaise in the S & P 500. Many fund managers have come to the defense of the stock as it has struggled while others have begun calls to short the world’s most valuable company.

Apple’s shares were down today by just over 1% at time of writing. The stock now stands at a price of 559.92 far below its April highs of above 630. Many investors are beginning to fear the company is over valued despite the company’s strong fundamentals.

Those arguing for high price target on the firm’s stock normally point to the company’s performance in China and the possibility of a new product line driving growth even higher. Those upsides are counterbalanced by fears that the company may have its subsidy agreements with carriers removed. That would cause much lower demand for the iPhone, the firm’s biggest seller.

A second fear comes from speculation about what would happen if the company released a bad product. The firm has had an unbelievable run of successful launches in recent years and each has been more successful than the last. Many fear that the company may release a product which does not impress consumers and wonder what effect that might have on the firm’s share price.

Despite fears those in the know, the world’s most important hedge funds, are clearly holding on to Apple. Piper Jaffray, the investment banker, released a report today giving the firm a price target of $1000 and listing the top ten strengths of the company.

Apple shares are in the doldrums at the moment. The company is likely to see an improvement in the price as the world talks up the release of the iPhone 5 and continued speculation of the introduction of a full Television product is also putting upward pressure on the firm’s stock.