Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares have been upgraded by BTIG’s Walter Piecyk, one of the first analysts to downgrade the stock almost a year ago. Now investors want to know why he did that, when most other analysts have downgraded the stock.
Piecyk went on CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street” to talk about why he upgraded it. He said he based his upgrade of shares of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:APPL) on the medium term rather than the short term. He said he’s looking toward 2014 because there could be growth in earnings then.
“The Street went from basically thinking that Tim Cook has to provide some revolutionary product to now assuming that he won’t even do obvious things to generate revenue,” Piecyk told CNBC.
He said it’s “logical” to expect Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) to either create a low-priced iPhone or “find other revenue opportunities in 2014.” He also believes that if management doesn’t do these things, they’ll likely be replaced.
In addition, he said a low-cost iPhone gives Apple an important opportunity to address the 70 percent of the mobile subscriber base that’s prepaid. He doesn’t believe releasing a low-cost iPhone would impact Apple’s margins much—just 2 to 3 percent in his estimations.
According to Piecyk, selling shares of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) right now is a risk because there are many possible announcements that could push the stock higher. For example, if management announces a decision on what it’s going to do with the company’s cash hoard, then the stock could go up. Also he points out that the expectations for the Samsung Galaxy S4, which will be unveiled today, could be over-hyped, which would be important for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL).
Wall Street doesn’t seem very interested in Piecyk’s view. Shares of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) are trading mostly flat in Thursday afternoon trades.