Apple Inc., AT&T Inc. and HP: Is it Better to be Safe, Than Sorry?

Apple Inc., AT&T Inc. and HP: Is it Better to be Safe, Than Sorry?

By Carly Forster 

Wells Fargo analyst Maynard Um recommends such hot button stocks as Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T), and Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ). But, with a 60% success rate and +1.6% average return, is he being too safe for real success?

In this week’s Throwback Thursday, we will look over Um’s record to help you decide if he is someone to trust.

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On June 3rd, Um reiterated a HOLD rating for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), explaining that,  “Relative to the expectations going into WWDC, the event, to us, was a slight disappointment given the lack of any new hardware announcements and a cursory address of the home automation capabilities (there was much more media attention relative to the short portion of presentation dedicated to this).”

But, is he being too safe for big returns?


Since January 22, 2009, Um has publically recommended Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) 48 times.  Of those recommendations, 15 of them have been HOLD.  Overall, Um has a +4.1% average return on the stock.

While the stock has increased in price from $84.46 in 2009 to $645.57 (prior to June 9th split); starting from December 30, 2013, Um has exclusively recommended to HOLD Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) stock. From December 30 until the split, the stock’s price went from $548.16 to $645.57, an increase of almost 18%.

Furthermore, of the 13 stocks that he has recommended, he currently has HOLD ratings for eight of them.

Even when Um sees positive movement, he will still give a HOLD rating.  Take his April 29th market perform rating for Nokia Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) (BIT:NOK1V) (HEL:NOK1V) as an example, when he explained that, “Overall results were largely in line, with upside driven by Networks operating margin. We believe if not for the EUR 5B capital allocation program, share reaction would be muted given a largely in line outlook. However, the announcement of Rajeev Suri as CEO should be viewed positively, in our opinion, though in line with our expectation.” The stock has gone up 6.9% since this recommendation.

But, Um is seeing results if you look at his absolute results after one year.  His average return stands at +1.6% and he has a 62% success rate.

However, an analyst’s job is to provide greater insight and knowledge so that an average investor will outperform the S&P 500.

If we change Um’s benchmark’s to see his performance report after one year in relation to the S&P 500, we see a completely different set of numbers. He has a -2.1% average return and a 48% success rate.

Stock performance, apple

So, what kind of investor do you want to be: slow and steady wins the race or do you wish to put a little more horsepower in your portfolio. The decision is yours. There is an analyst out there for every investor.

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  1. “There’s an analyst out there for every investor”

    Yes, and most of them are as clueless as we investors. So why pay them for their useless advice?

    Buy AAPL when it was unbelievably undervalued? Hold now that it has arguably very rosy prospects? Wow, the guy’s a genius.