Why Analysts Think Apple Stock Will Go Higher From All-Time High
Apple’s stock price tends to do well in the six months prior to a new iPhone introduction, as investor excitement builds about how rumored new features might attract a wave of sales. With the shares reaching an all-time high on Tuesday—roughly six months before the next iPhone is expected to debut—Wall Street has clearly noticed the trend.
Amidst a series of positive analyst reports this week, Bernstein Research’s Toni Sacconganhi on Tuesday raised his price target to $160 from $140 in a note on Tuesday. And if U.S. tax law changes as Republicans are seeking to allow Apple to bring back its $230 billion overseas cash, the stock could hit $170, Sacconaghi wrote.
Apple shares, already up 22% this year, hit an all-time high of $142.80 in midday trading. Coincidentally, $142.86 would equal $1,000 per share before the company’s seven-for-one stock split back in 2014. On Tuesday, the company announced a slew of minor upgrades, like a cheaper iPad and an app called Clips for making short videos.
“Despite its strong YTD performance, we continue to believe the risk-reward on Apple remains attractive and are raising our price target,” the Bernstein analyst wrote. “We believe investors should look to hold overweight positions over the coming months.”
Get Data Sheet, Fortune’s technology newsletter.
Like many of his peers, Sacconaghi is predicting that the next iPhone, dubbed the iPhone 8 by outsiders, will include enough new features to convince more existing iPhone owners to upgrade while also stimulating more defections from Android users. Amid rumors that Apple will introduce a new higher-priced model with a larger and curved screen, Sacconaghi expects the average selling price may rise as well.
Apple’s stock has outperformed the market by an average of 16% in the six months prior to iPhone introductions, according to Sacconaghi’s report. It beat the market by only 4% on average in the six months following the phone debuts.
Earlier this week, Cowen & Co analyst Timothy Arcuri raised his price target on Apple (AAPL) to $155 from $135. Amit Daryanani at RBC Capital and Piper Jaffray’s Michael Olson both maintained price targets of $155, while predicted strong gains for the next iPhone, which in turn will boost services revenue, they said.
Still, following such a nearly universal trend among Wall Street analysts isn’t always a route to riches. And Apple’s six-month performance before the two most recent iPhone introductions trailed the market by an average of more than 4%.