Apple Short Interest Falls 5.4 Million on Heels of iPhone 7 Launch

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Shares sold short in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) dropped 9%, or 5.4 million, to 54.7 million in the period that ended September 30. The fall happened shortly after the introduction of the iPhone 7, which has helped push Apple’s shares up 10% in the past month to $116, as well as lift its market cap to $627 billion, the highest of any public company in the world.

Although short sellers for the period could not have forecast it, the stock has been further catapulted by the discontinuation of iPhone 7 rival the Samsung Galaxy Note 7, which has hurt short sellers in the stock more.

The rise in Apple’s shares is supported by ongoing upgrades of the stock by Wall Street analysts.

Barron’s reports:

Canaccord Genuity’s Mike Walkley … reiterates a Buy rating on shares of Apple (AAPL), and a $140 price target, writing that long order times for the iPhone 7 bode well for Apple’s average selling price for the phone.

“We believe initial iPhone 7 sales continue to trend positively, leading us to increase our December quarter iPhone estimate from 75M to 76.5M,” he writes.

According to a recent 24/7 Wall St. daily analyst calls story:

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) was maintained as Overweight at Barclays, but the firm lowered its price target from $115 to $114. This is after reports of Apple increasing component orders for iPhone parts. The stock closed up 0.76% at $113.95 on Wednesday and was indicated down 0.6% at $113.25 on Thursday. Its consensus analyst price target is $125.64 and it has a 52-week trading range of $89.47 to $123.82.

That consensus target is well above the current price.