Many investors and traders alike have been hoping that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) would be largely immune or at least a little shielded from the horrible consumer trends. It looks like Goldman Sachs is now joining the ranks of analysts who believe this is not the real case.
Goldman Sachs downgraded Apple to a Neutral rating from a Buy rating. Goldman Sachs even noted the concerns about consumer spending in the seasonally softer first half of 2009 and noted Apple’s valuation is at a premium.
The research report also noted that shipments of MacBooks, iPod Nanos, and iPhone were all slightly lower than expected going into the quarter. The note that Apple is likely to face a tougher environment in the March-2009 and June-2009 quarters as consumer demand falls over yet again is also hard not to notice.
Goldman took the new target down to $115.00 and lowered earnings estimates down to $4.75 EPS for 2009.
Shares are holding up better than many might think with Goldman Sachs throwing in the towel. Shares are down less than 2% pre-market at $96.40.
Jon C. Ogg
December 15, 2008