Gene Munster has been bullish on Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) for years, and he still is, carrying an Overweight rating on the company’s stock. However, his near-term view of the company isn’t so rosy. He’s more focused on the second half of the year, even though he thinks other analysts are being too bullish on Apple’s June quarter.
Munster: no immediate positive catalysts for Apple
Speaking on CNBC today, the Piper Jaffray analyst said he believes Wall Street will begin revising downward its estimates for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s June quarter because he doesn’t see any positive catalysts to justify current estimates. On average, analysts are expecting to see 10% growth in the June quarter.
But in spite of the expected downward revisions, Munster believes investors should keep holding onto Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares. He says it is all about the new products which will be coming out in the second half of the year, so the June quarter isn’t all that important. At this point though, he thinks many investors are holding back on Apple until the June estimates come down. He predicts that after Wall Street estimates are lowered to de-risk the quarter, investors will begin to “take a much bigger weight in the back half of the year,” reports Benzinga.
China Mobile reports disappointing iPhone numbers
Today China Mobile Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:CHL) reported lower than expected iPhone sales, saying it sold about 1 million of them last month. Munster called that result “disappointing,” according to Barron’s, although it was about in line with his own projection that for the full quarter, China Nobile could activate about 3 million iPhones.
Analyst Timothy Arcuri of Cowen & Co. also has an Outperform rating on Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), and he also urges investors just to be patient with the company’s progress on China Mobile. He notes that the carrier’s 4G network is still in the early stages of a phased rollout and that at launch, the iPhone was only available in select cities.
Credit Suisse analyst Kulbinder Garcha, however, thinks this early result is already an indication that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) won’t see much adoption of its iPhone on China Mobile Ltd. (ADR) (NYSE:CHL)’s network, mainly because the price is too high. He has a Neutral rating on Apple.