Apple Inc. (AAPL) Shares Continue Falling As Investors Fret

Apple Inc. (AAPL) Shares Continue Falling As Investors Fret
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Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) continue their downward trend today as investors continue to fret about a variety of things, especially weak demand for the iPhone 5. The stock dipped below $500 per share on Monday—the lowest price the stock has been in almost a year. And today as investors prepare for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s next earnings call on Jan. 23, they just can’t shake the fear that something bad is going down.

Apple Inc. (AAPL) Shares Continue Falling As Investors Fret

In a report to investors today, analysts at Nomura said they have maintained their Neutral rating on Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s stock, but they cut their target price to $530 per share. With the company’s shares trading closer to $487 per share, that $530 price now seems a bit of a stretch. Apple has lost more than $14 per share or almost 3 percent, since the markets opened today.

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Nomura Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:NMR) analysts said they have lowered their estimates for iPhone 5 sales to reflect the signs that they are weaker than expected. They’ve reduced their estimates by 5 percent for the company’s 2013 fiscal year and 8 percent for the 2014 fiscal year. Meanwhile they have raised their iPad estimates by 12 percent for this year and 13 percent for next year, mostly because of iPad Mini sales, which they say will rise to 70 percent of total iPad sales.

They are forecasting $45 earnings per share for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) shareholders this year and $50 earnings per share for next year. Those numbers are 7 percent below consensus for 2013 and 13 percent below consensus for 2014. Their estimates are based on falling iPhone gross profit margins.

According to analysts at Nomura Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:NMR), the launch of the iPhone 5S or a new iPad Mini with a retina display would be a positive for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) but “unlikely to materially boost demand.” They expect that June’s iOS7 launch will be more important for the company.

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