Strange fluctuations in the last days of the company's third fiscal quarter

By Philip Elmer-DeWitt
June 29, 2012

FORTUNE — With Apple’s AAPL 2012 Q3 set to close on Saturday, analysts are making some last-minute adjustments. Two caught our eye because they moved in opposite directions to nearly the same place.

  • Pacific Crest’s Andy Hargreaves on Friday raised his 12-month price target to $690 from $630 on the strength of what he estimates will be strong sales of the iPad mini — a product that, as far as we know, doesn’t exist
  • J.P. Morgan’s Mark Moskowitz lowered his estimates on all 18 stocks in his hardware list, including Apple, in a note to clients entitled “Not Running for the Hills, but We Are Preparing for Tougher Times.” His new target for Apple is $695, down 2.8% from his previous target, set in March, of $715.

Moskowitz’s list three reasons for his wholesale revisions: (I quote)

1) slowing IT spending patterns in EMEA [Europe, the Middle East and Africa] and U.S. Federal,
2) uncertain growth dynamics in China due to the absence of incremental economic stimulus activity in the region,
3) currency pressures as a result of a stronger U.S. dollar.

He hasn’t given up on Apple, however. It remains one of J.P. Morgan’s “Big Four in tougher times,” along with EMC Corp. EMC , IBM IBM and NetApp NTAP .

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