By Philip Elmer-DeWitt
August 9, 2011

Its P/E ratio hit 13.97 Monday, lower than at the depth of the 2008-2009 meltdown

Reader Travis Lewis points out that after Monday’s $20.41 (5.8%) drop, Apple’s (AAPL) price-to-earnings ratio has fallen below the low point set on Jan. 20, 2009  — six days after Steve Jobs announced his second medical leave — when the stock closed at $78.20.

To make the comparison, Lewis had to go back to Apple’s non-adjusted earnings numbers, before the company revised its accounting methods to include deferred revenue from iPhone sales. His calculations:

Q4’08 EPS: $1.26
Q3’08 EPS: $1.19
Q2’08 EPS: $1.16
Q1’08 EPS: $1.76

Total fiscal 2008 EPS: $5.37.
01/20/2009  trailing P/E ratio: 14.56
08/08/2011  trailing P/E ratio: 13.97

In other words, Apple at $353.21 (which is where it closed Monday) is cheaper than Apple at $78.20 (where it closed on Jan. 20, 2009).

Lewis is a Seeking Alpha contributor who writes about the Apple options market at

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