New York brokerage firm BTIG is having a more conservative outlook for tech giant Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), resulting in a $0.54 cut in its Fiscal 2016 EPS estimate to $8.87 and a $0.53 cut in its Fiscal 2017 EPS estimate to $9.57. Both estimates are now below consensus. The impact of these changes resulted in a price target reduction to $130 from $141.
Lead analyst Walter Piecyk wrote, “We cut our estimates on Apple based on a more conservative outlook for the upgrade cycle of existing users. We cut 10 million units out of our Fiscal 2016 and 2017 estimates, but left our estimate of 50 million iPhones sold in the March quarter unchanged. We also reduced our revenue expectations for the Apple Watch given the recent price cuts, which we do not expect to be offset by higher volumes.”
The analyst continued, “We are cutting our price target to $130 based on 13.5x (was 14.0x) our new Fiscal 2017 EPS estimate, but are maintaining our Buy rating, given the valuation on the stock, anticipation for the next product announcement and low Street expectations for the March quarter. However, we are now more cautious about a potential structural change in the replacement cycle of existing users.”
According to TipRanks.com, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, analyst Walter Piecyk has a yearly average return of 10.7% and a 60% success rate. Piecyk has a 25% average return when recommending AAPL, and is ranked #589 out of 3852 analysts.
Nokia Corp (ADR)
Credit Suisse analyst Kulbinder Garcha reiterated an Outperform rating on shares of Nokia Corp (ADR) (NYSE:NOK) with price target of €8.20, after the Finnish tech firm announced that it has started looking at headcount reductions. The company will also report on the progress of synergy and transformation program at its quarterly earnings.
Garcha noted, “In addition to Nokia announcement, Reuters noted that Nokia specifically is planning to cut 1,400 jobs in Germany (out of 4,800 in total), 1,300 in Finland (out of 6,850), and 400 in France (out of 4,200). This gives us a total of 3,100 cuts out of a total of 104k employees globally (~56k at Nokia and ~48k at ALU). All in cost per employee stands at €67k for Nokia and €77k for ALU, so taking an average cost of €72k per employee, this would suggest around €225mn of cost savings.”
Furthermore, “Our conclusion remains that Nokia’s synergy target of €900mn is conservative. 1) We note that there is scope to eliminate most, if not all, of ALU’s wireless OPEX (CSe at €1.4bn) although it may take time. 2) Nokia is maintaining a healthy cash balance, in case it wants to pursue incremental synergies. 3) We believe real estate and headcount optimization could be applied (we estimate this at ~€600mn savings). We continue to believe that the company could see gross/net savings of €1.7bn/ €1.2bn.”
According to TipRanks.com, analyst Kulbinder Garcha has a yearly average return of 8.4% and a 54% success rate. Garcha has an -10.5% average return when recommending NOK, and is ranked #289 out of 3852 analysts.