Apple Investor: Credit Suisse Looking For Monster Earnings This Quarter

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AAPL Shares Pull Back As Employees Sell Stock

steve jobs smilesYeah, baby!

Shares of AAPL pulled back yesterday as insiders sold 1 million shares. The stock closed at $226.65 (17x estimated fiscal-year 2010 EPS and 18x Enterprise Value / Trailing Twelve Months Free Cash Flow). Upcoming catalysts include the launch of the iPad next week; analyst previews of the March quarter (likely raising earnings estimates); March NPD data on Mac unit sales; and the launch of the next generation iPhone this summer.

After Strong Gains Insiders Take Some Stock Off The Table
Apple officers are taking advantage of the ripe stock price. Seven officers, including COO Tim Cook, sold 1 million shares yesterday for a cumulative pay day of more than $200 million. Each officer was granted the stock award in late 2005.  The shares vested Wednesday, one day prior to the selling spree. While some may question what the sales say about the Company’s prospects, the executives are most likely just taking some money off the table after a solid run.

Apple About To Have Second Strongest Quarter Ever Says Analyst
(Street Insider)
Credit Suisse’s Bill Shope is pounding the table on Apple. In a note out this morning, he believes the company is tracking well ahead of expectations (per usual). Shope is raising estimates to levels that imply the second strongest quarter ever for Apple (including seasonally strong December quarters). He reiterated his Outperform and top stock pick rating, while increasing his price target to $300.

Product Launch, Stock Run, Repeat; AAPL Has Upside From iPad Launch
When Apple introduces a new product, the stock generally follows with quite a good run. The iPhone sent the stock up 41% leading up to its launch.  AAPL shares went on to soar 136% before the markets fell apart with the economic crisis. The stock has risen 11% since the announcement of the iPad. Many analysts believe their estimates are conservative so “there is plenty of room for upside.”

“Apple’s iPad Coming To Kill Us All” With Massive Sales Potential
The majority of investors and analysts are predicting that the iPad will exceed iPhone sales during its first complete quarter. That’s over 1 million units. Analysts broadly predict that “in a little less than a year, iPad unit sales are expected to exceed the estimated 3 million Kindles that have sold to date.” No pressure.

Apple Signs Contract For iPad Displays From Samsung, Pitting Them Against LG
(Apple Insider)
Apple has agreed to a 3-year, $240 million deal with Samsung to lock down 3 million displays for iPads. The company also has a deal with LG for displays. Jay Yarrow at Business Insider says by signing up a new supplier, Apple can theoretically create competition in the market and ensure it’s not dependent upon one company.The Apple Investor is a daily report from TBI Research. Sign up here to receive it by email.

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