At the end of the week, computer and software giant Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) was trading roughly 3% off of its five-day high of $127 set on Tuesday and roughly 8% off its 52-week high of $134.54. Apple ran into some rough patches this week, both from a strategic and stock market standpoint. Let’s take a look at why.
1. China Worries
Like most large companies, Apple faces market saturation in mature economies such as the United States. Its hopes rely on emerging economies such as China. In fact, 29% of Apple’s second-quarter revenues came from China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Worries from a deceleration in China’s robust expansion sent the Chinese stock market into a tailspin earlier in the week, and Apple’s shareholders, given the company’s exposure to the region, got caught in the crosshairs.
2. Apple Watch Flop
The highly anticipated Apple Watch fell flat on its face. According to sources cited by MarketWatch, sales of the product declined a stomach turning 90% since its release date. Quite frankly, Apple has the price point of these watches set too high. People tend to buy the cheaper, and consequently less profitable for Apple, “sport” watch. The Apple Watch represents the first original product since the death of Steve Jobs, leaving market pundits to speculate about Apple’s ability to continue to innovate. Apple faces a great deal of competition from Fitbit and Samsung watches.
3. Apple Music Issues
Apple Music represents another interesting strategy to keep customers coming back and engaging with its products. However, some concerns about the service exist, such as censorship, less emphasis on certain music genres such as country music and increased competition from rivals such as Google Inc.’s (NASDAQ: GOOGL) Play Music, according to Fortune magazine.
The Chinese economy most likely will recover, barring any kind of significant political change. Apple certainly possesses the financial resources to effectively battle any kind of competition via innovation and acquisitions. Apple will not go anywhere anytime soon.
Thomson/First Call has the analyst’s mean target price pegged at $148.88 per share, which represents a 17% upside from its current stock price. The stock closed up 2.6% on Friday at $123.28.
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