Merrill reinstates Apple at Buy, Susquehanna ups target to $120 on iPhone production

“Merrill Lynch’s Wamsi Mohan takes over coverage and reinstates Apple at a Buy, with a price target of $120, taking over from his predecessor, Justin Post,” Tiernan Ray reports for Barron’s. “Wamsi sees a ‘super cycle’ for the iPhone in 2015, perhaps producing sales of as much as 195 million units, according to a summary provided by the wire service The Fly on the Wall.”

“Also this morning, Chris Caso of Susquehanna Financial Group reiterates a ‘Positive’ rating on the shares, and raises his price target to $120 from $115, writing that his review of the production rate of the iPhone 6 suggests the devices are ramping up faster than he’d expected,” Ray reports. “Caso raises his estimates for shipments in the quarter just ended, fiscal Q4 for Apple, to 38 million units from 37 million, and raises Q1′s number to 61 million from 68 million, but that production estimate causes him to see ‘upside to our unit sales forecast if supply remains tight through the December quarter.'”

Read more in the full article here.

Related article:
Apple shifts order ratio to hugely popular iPhone 6 Plus, away from iPhone 6 – October 7, 2014


  1. According to the usage numbers it appears the 5c and 5s are also selling well. My estimate for total iPhones sold during the first week of the quarter is around 9.5 million. When multiplying this amount by 13 1/2 weeks the total number of iPhones sold in the December quarter could equal 128 million. This crushes last year’s total by 77 million.

    This might seem like a large number, but I don’t think analysts or investors fully appreciate the positive change in market dynamics this year. First, there is an entirely new catagory being offered; the phablet and from all indications it is selling like hotcakes. Second, this year has two one-year old iPhones being sold at a discount; the iPhone 5c/5s. Last year the iPhone 5 was discontinued which means there were zero one-year old iPhones being sold.

    The 5s and 5c will probably do very well in emerging markets and with budget-contrained consumers over the next two quarters, just like the 4 and 4s did earlier in the year. This means it is conceivable 100 million iPhones will be sold this quarter. This averages to around 800k iPhone 6/6 Plus and 200k iPhone 4/4s/5c/5s a day. As the quarter continues more data will become available and this estimate could change.

  2. No matter what Apple does, Wall Street is going to devalue the company and drive the share price down so shareholders will see no gains. It’s very likely that the H-P split will drive its share price up despite losses and employee firings. This is the way of Wall Street. Even as Samsung’s smartphone business implodes, Apple’s target prices get raised and iPhone 6 sales accelerate, the share price continues to fall at the same pace as any other tech company out there. Just take a comparison check of Microsoft to Apple YTD share price gains. Apple has only edged out Microsoft by a percentage point or so and Microsoft isn’t even having a spectacular year of sales. Apple simply can’t do enough to satisfy investors.

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