Apple stock expectations slashed as it is overtaken by Microsoft

Wall Street firm Cannaccord Genuity has predicted that iPhone demand and Apple value is set to drop, as Microsoft overtakes it as the largest publicly trading company


Expectations for Apple's financial growth have been slashed again by another Wall Street firm Canaccord Genuity due to fears of waning interest in the iPhone and smartphones in general. Michael Walkley, an analyst at Canaccord Genuity, has lowered his 12-month price target from $250 to $225 over the coming year, however the new target is 24% higher than Wednesday's closing price.

"Our surveys indicated soft smartphone demand with disappointing initial XR sales," Walkley said in a note to clients November 29. "Given the soft start to the latest lineup of iPhones, we are lowering our iPhone estimates and forecast lower year-over-year unit sales in calendar 2019."

Walkley added that muted demand for the iPhone XR had fallen short of his expectations causing him to slash his prediction for the demand for iPhone sales to 213 million units in 2018, 208 million in 2019 and 217 million in 2020.

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Cannacord Genuity also reduced its 2019 and 2020 earnings per share estimates and has said that it expects earnings per share of $13.25 and $14.69 in 2020, down from the $13.46 and $15.18, respectively, that had been previously predicted.

Apple has been struggling of late due to weak iPhone sales and also in the particularly volatile stock market that has seen it lose the trillion-dollar valuation it received in August.

This week has been marked by a very public market tug-of-war between Microsoft and Apple in a fight to be the world's most valuable publicly-listed company. Microsoft briefly overtook Apple on Monday, only for Apple to finish first at the close of day, however, on Wednesday November 28 Microsoft officially took the top spot, for the time being. 

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