Kesler Norman & Wride LLC cut its stake in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL – Get Rating) by 4.3% in the fourth quarter, according to its most recent Form 13F filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission. The firm owned 70,332 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock after selling 3,198 shares during the quarter. Apple accounts for about 2.4% of Kesler Norman & Wride LLC’s investment portfolio, making the stock its 2nd largest holding. Kesler Norman & Wride LLC’s holdings in Apple were worth $9,138,000 as of its most recent filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission.
Other large investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the company. Great West Life Assurance Co. Can bought a new stake in shares of Apple during the 3rd quarter valued at about $1,890,884,000. Barclays PLC boosted its holdings in Apple by 53.0% in the 3rd quarter. Barclays PLC now owns 30,235,823 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $4,178,590,000 after buying an additional 10,471,342 shares during the period. Vanguard Group Inc. boosted its holdings in Apple by 0.7% in the 1st quarter. Vanguard Group Inc. now owns 1,269,995,750 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $221,753,959,000 after buying an additional 8,734,393 shares during the period. AustralianSuper Pty Ltd bought a new position in Apple in the 4th quarter worth $1,075,599,000. Finally, Swiss National Bank raised its stake in Apple by 13.1% during the 1st quarter. Swiss National Bank now owns 71,060,708 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock valued at $12,407,910,000 after purchasing an additional 8,230,300 shares during the period. 57.60% of the stock is currently owned by institutional investors.
Wall Street Analyst Weigh In
Several analysts recently issued reports on the company. The Goldman Sachs Group assumed coverage on Apple in a research note on Sunday, March 5th. They set a “buy” rating and a $199.00 target price on the stock. Evercore ISI reiterated an “outperform” rating and issued a $190.00 price target on shares of Apple in a report on Monday, February 6th. Jefferies Financial Group reissued a “buy” rating and set a $195.00 price objective on shares of Apple in a report on Thursday, March 2nd. UBS Group set a $180.00 target price on Apple in a report on Monday, April 3rd. Finally, Needham & Company LLC increased their price target on Apple from $170.00 to $195.00 and gave the company a “buy” rating in a research note on Friday, May 5th. Two 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 stock. According to MarketBeat.com, the stock presently has an average rating of “Moderate Buy” and an average price target of $174.74.
Apple Trading Up 0.7 %
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL – Get Rating) last released its earnings results on Thursday, May 4th. The iPhone maker reported $1.52 EPS for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.44 by $0.08. Apple had a return on equity of 165.72% and a net margin of 24.49%. The firm had revenue of $94.84 billion during the quarter, compared to the consensus estimate of $92.84 billion. During the same quarter in the previous year, the company posted $1.52 earnings per share. The company’s revenue was down 2.5% compared to the same quarter last year. On average, research analysts predict that Apple Inc. will post 5.99 earnings per share for the current fiscal year.
Apple Increases Dividend
The business also recently declared a quarterly dividend, which was paid on Thursday, May 18th. Shareholders of record on Monday, May 15th were given a dividend of $0.24 per share. This is an increase from Apple’s previous quarterly dividend of $0.23. This represents a $0.96 annualized dividend and a yield of 0.55%. The ex-dividend date of this dividend was Friday, May 12th. Apple’s dividend payout ratio (DPR) is currently 16.30%.
Apple announced that its Board of Directors has approved a share buyback plan on Thursday, May 4th that allows the company to repurchase $90.00 billion in shares. This repurchase authorization allows the iPhone maker to repurchase up to 3.4% of its stock through open market purchases. Stock repurchase plans are typically a sign that the company’s leadership believes its shares are undervalued.
Insider Buying and Selling at Apple
In related news, COO Jeffrey E. Williams sold 187,730 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, March 22nd. The stock was sold at an average price of $159.76, for a total value of $29,991,744.80. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief operating officer now owns 489,816 shares of the company’s stock, valued at approximately $78,253,004.16. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. In related news, COO Jeffrey E. Williams sold 187,730 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, March 22nd. The shares were sold at an average price of $159.76, for a total transaction of $29,991,744.80. Following the completion of the transaction, the chief operating officer now owns 489,816 shares in the company, valued at approximately $78,253,004.16. The transaction was disclosed in a legal filing with the SEC, which can be accessed through the SEC website. Also, insider Chris Kondo sold 4,092 shares of the company’s stock in a transaction dated Monday, May 8th. The stock was sold at an average price of $173.26, for a total transaction of $708,979.92. Following the transaction, the insider now 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 ninety days, insiders sold 439,529 shares of company stock valued at $71,703,657. 0.06% of the stock is owned by company insiders.
Apple Company Profile
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.
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