Apple stock jumped up 7.04%, +$17.47 to $265.70, in premarket trading Friday. This morning, Wells Fargo analyst Aaron Rakers upgraded the stock to overweight from equal weight.
“While it is still admittedly difficult (impossible) to gauge the fundamental impact Apple may realize from the COVID-19 outbreak, at current levels we think shares offer a compelling risk / reward for long-term patient investors,” Rakers wrote in a note to clients.
While he admits that the situation understandably draws concern now, he’s encouraged by signs that production issues seem to be improving more quickly than expected with Apple’s Asia supply chain. He sees room for the company to “accelerate” its transition to becoming net-cash neutral over time due to the company’s strong cash position and free-cash flow.
MacDailyNews Take: As Apple stock jumps, it bears remembering that Apple is due to update the company’s capital return program with the company’s fiscal Q2 earnings report expected near the end of April. Apple has a lot of cash available to make significant moves with buybacks and dividends.