Column Capital Advisors LLC grew its position in shares of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL – Get Rating) by 256.0% during the fourth quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The institutional investor owned 116,435 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock after purchasing an additional 83,729 shares during the period. Apple makes up about 0.7% of Column Capital Advisors LLC’s holdings, making the stock its 22nd largest holding. Column Capital Advisors LLC’s holdings in Apple were worth $4,411,000 at the end of the most recent reporting period.
A number of other large investors also recently added to or reduced their stakes in AAPL. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can acquired a new stake in shares of Apple during the third quarter worth about $1,890,884,000. Barclays PLC lifted its position in shares of Apple by 53.0% during the third quarter. Barclays PLC now owns 30,235,823 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $4,178,590,000 after purchasing an additional 10,471,342 shares in the last quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. raised its stake in shares of Apple by 0.7% in the first quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,269,995,750 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock valued at $221,753,959,000 after acquiring an additional 8,734,393 shares in the last quarter. AustralianSuper Pty Ltd acquired a new stake in shares of Apple in the fourth quarter valued at $1,075,599,000. Finally, Swiss National Bank raised its stake in shares of Apple by 13.1% in the first quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 71,060,708 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock valued at $12,407,910,000 after acquiring an additional 8,230,300 shares in the last quarter. 57.60% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors and hedge funds.
Apple Trading Down 1.5 %
Shares of AAPL stock opened at $171.56 on Wednesday. The firm has a 50-day moving average price of $165.70 and a 200 day moving average price of $151.11. Apple Inc. has a twelve month low of $124.17 and a twelve month high of $176.39. The company has a market capitalization of $2.70 trillion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 29.13, a PEG ratio of 2.34 and a beta of 1.29. The company has a current ratio of 0.94, a quick ratio of 0.88 and a debt-to-equity ratio of 1.56.
Apple announced that its board has initiated a stock repurchase program on Thursday, May 4th that allows the company to buyback $90.00 billion in shares. This buyback authorization allows the iPhone maker to purchase up to 3.4% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock buyback programs are typically an indication that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.
Apple Increases Dividend
The business also recently disclosed a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, May 18th. Stockholders of record on Monday, May 15th were paid a dividend of $0.24 per share. The ex-dividend date was Friday, May 12th. This represents a $0.96 dividend on an annualized basis and a dividend yield of 0.56%. This is an increase from Apple’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.23. Apple’s dividend payout ratio is currently 16.30%.
Insider Buying and Selling
In related news, insider Chris Kondo sold 4,092 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction that occurred on Monday, May 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $173.26, for a total transaction of $708,979.92. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 33,946 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $5,881,483.96. The sale was disclosed in a document filed with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. In other Apple news, SVP Deirdre O’brien sold 43,622 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, April 3rd. The stock was sold at an average price of $165.41, for a total transaction of $7,215,515.02. Following the completion of the sale, the senior vice president now owns 136,444 shares of the company’s stock, valued at $22,569,202.04. The transaction was disclosed in a document filed with the SEC, which is available through this hyperlink. Also, insider Chris Kondo sold 4,092 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, May 8th. The shares were sold at an average price of $173.26, for a total value of $708,979.92. Following the sale, the insider now directly owns 33,946 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $5,881,483.96. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Over the last three months, insiders have sold 439,529 shares of company stock valued at $71,703,657. Insiders own 0.06% of the company’s stock.
Analysts Set New Price Targets
Several analysts recently weighed in on AAPL shares. Cowen reduced their target price on shares of Apple from $200.00 to $195.00 and set an “outperform” rating on the stock in a report on Friday, February 3rd. Robert W. Baird lifted their price target on Apple from $170.00 to $180.00 in a research report on Tuesday, May 2nd. Morgan Stanley lifted their price objective on shares of Apple from $180.00 to $185.00 and gave the company an “overweight” rating in a research note on Friday, May 5th. StockNews.com assumed coverage on Apple in a report on Thursday, May 18th. They issued a “hold” rating on the stock. Finally, Jefferies Financial Group reiterated a “buy” rating and set a $195.00 price target on shares of Apple in a research note on Thursday, March 2nd. Two equities research analysts have rated the stock with a sell rating, six have assigned a hold rating and twenty-six have given a buy rating to the company. According to MarketBeat.com, the company presently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average price target of $174.74.
Apple, Inc engages in the design, manufacture, and sale of smartphones, personal computers, tablets, wearables and accessories, and other varieties of related services. It operates through the following geographical segments: Americas, Europe, Greater China, Japan, and Rest of Asia Pacific. The Americas segment includes North and South America.
- Get a free copy of the StockNews.com research report on Apple (AAPL)
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