Steve Cortes: It’s time to short Apple

“Contrarian trader Steve Cortes on Thursday said that he’s ready to jump back into Apple — by shorting it,” Bruno J. Navarro reports for CNBC. “‘I haven’t touched Apple in three months, but I think it’s time to get back in on the short side,’ he said on ‘Fast Money.’ ‘The main reason: When I look at charts, I look at Google from late 2007, in late November 2007, and overlay Apple, present tense, over that chart it looks incredibly similar.'”

“Google’s chart from that period showed a trend that Apple appeared to be following, in which the stock ‘seems like it’s unassailable, and then we see a parabolic move,’ he said,” Navarro reports. “Cortes said he was looking for Apple to hit $600 — ‘I sold it at $595 and I do think that it’s time to come back to Earth.'”

Navarro reports, “Cortes clarified that he had no problem with Apple’s fundamentals or valuation. ‘I do have tremendous qualms with the technical picture of Apple right now,’ he said, adding, ‘I made a lot of money being short Apple in September and October.’ Apple bull Tony [sic] Sacconaghi of Sanford Bernstein agreed that Apple’s past periods of outperformance came within six-week spans. ‘“The rest of the time, there have been periods of flat and underperformance,’ he said. Sacconaghi said Apple was nothing like Google in the past, trading at a much lower multiple, showing strong cash flow and more than $100 per share on its balance sheet.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Sheesh, Toni’s making sense. That makes us wonder whether we’ve had too much beer already or if the apocalyse is uopn us or something.


  1. His info is based upon chartered waters.
    AAPL is way in unchartered territory.
    Typical stock measuring variables don’t even work for AAPL…look at them.
    Rules should change to keep short sellers like this nut from screwing the average investor, but it seems the guys who make the rules also short sell…like Nancy Pelosi.

  2. Is it clear to everyone just how irrelevant stock prices can be? This is how the game is played, people. The stock market is a confidence game, and analysts are no more than carnival barkers and three card monte dealers. The shorts want to instill panic and they’ll get it, it’s just question of how much they can move the needle.

  3. Ok. Everyone is raising their price targets and this guy wants to short AAPL. No problem. They will have to cover their shorts and those that are still long will still make money.

    Google is nothing like Apple. He is a chart reader. Apple is the innovator of of this post PC world and Google’s Android is a shadow and copycat of Apple’s innovative products and services. Apple is a product and services supplier and Google gives away free software and earns money with internet ads that Apple’s SIRI never stops to read. When SIRI is on all of Apple’s products running iOS and OS X, they will be only a fraction of what they are now.

    Charts can’t give anyone the full story of what has never happened before. Apple is blazing a path that no other technology company has ever traveled. So chart away and short what ever you can afford to loose.

  4. Steve Cortes is either an idiot or is purposely misleading investors. Every stock that you look at in late 2007 behaved the same way. It was the beginning of the FINANCIAL CRISIS.

    MDN please call him out. Notice that AAPL went down right after his call. BTW, he indicated he was investing in Nokia due to the block buster Windows 8 phones and tablets coming up.

  5. A warning to anyone considering shorting Apple…

    Yes, it makes sense that we see profit-taking and lulls between product news and earnings. Yes, we have just seen a huge run-up in Apple’s stock. Yes, Apple’s stock has pretty much factored in the success of the new iPad.

    However, Apple’s earnings are coming up, and if it’s a blow-out quarter, all hell will break loose. The stock is trading at a 16x multiple, but that’s over the trailing 12 months, over which time the earnings have sky-rocketed.

    The long term on this stock is to continue to go up. There’s nothing yet indicating any signs of downward pressure from the core parts of Apple’s business, and all kinds of signs of new products and opportunities.

    Being long on this stock, assuming you’re not buying on margin, is low risk, and just a matter of the amount of time for reward. Being short on this stock is very high risk.

  6. He’s one of the head-up-their-ass, chart-obsessed drones who still don’t get Apple. CNBC had a new “chart “expert,” Abigail Doolittle, who has taken over Erin Burnett’s anti-Apple bigotry.

    To his credit, Jon Najarian completely disagreed with Cortes for all the correct reasons. The chart-obsessed wonks will never understand what Apple has accomplished and how it will continue to excel.

  7. I remember when this Cortes guy was short last time. Doesn’t seem like Sept/Oct of last year. Seems more recent. Apple was around $400 when he did it. It may have gone down all of $20 in less than 2 weeks before he closed his position, because Apple rebounded after that. He may pick up a little money, but the risk of getting burned is high.

    The google graph overlay from March 2004 to 2007 is from Doug Kass. I bet you can find a post about it at Business Insider. There’s a superficial resemblance, but technicians are tea leaf readers. Highly risky to read too much into some line squiggles. In the old days people who read bones, sticks, or tea leaves were called shamans. Now I call them charlatans.

    1. The shamans of old were elders of the tribe and were long on experience, human insight, and advanced technical knowledge. The bones, tea leaves, etc. were simply ritual artifacts to instill awe and belief in superstitious common people.

      Real shamans today stay the hell away from stock markets, and they sure as hell don’t work for investment groups or blog for money. They have too much integrity for that—unlike today’s charlatans.

  8. I think the old patterns of AAPL may be gone. Particularly this year because the next catalyst is always right around the corner.Iphone 5 in June and I-tv in the fall. Without an earnings miss or a major macro economic failure i don’t see the stock falling back too much. Anyone who shorts it would have to be very careful.

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