Monday, July 28, 2008

Is Apple a Good Investment?

I've owned Apple (AAPL) stock off and on over the past couple of years. It was one of my biggest gains ever a couple of years ago, as I rode the stock from about 60 to 100. The dynamics of the company have changed since then. The main focus is the iphone. Although I haven't used one, I've studied its unique features and what it means for the market. Many have said that P/E analysis of Apple's stock is useless (hold on before you think of America Online in the late 90's). It is not due to its future earnings, but in the way that they credit earnings for the iphone. They defer a significant portion of the revenue on each iphone sale, instead crediting themselves on the subscription basis rather than the entire unit price. At least this is how I understand it.

The 3G market is the future, and with higher internet speeds, there should now be nothing holding back the iphone, because it has many more features and is easier to use than its competitors.

You also have to like their dominance in other markets, such as mp3 players (ipods), and music sales (itunes). Also, their is a pretty steady shift in popularity to mac computers as well.

As for the stock, it has become fairly predictable. Apple has a history of giving very conservative earnings, and then beating them substantially. This years correction to 120 was obviously a buying opportunity, and if we continue to see mid-quarter weakness, I'd look at picking up some shares.

I like Apple, just like Google, because they are the true innovators in our economy and society. People continue to buy and use their products, and I don't see this slowing any time soon.

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