This morning, Bloomberg reported the European Commission has ordered that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) pay EUR13 billion, or U.S. $14.5 billion, plus interest in taxes to Ireland for “selective tax treatment” between 2013 and 2014. This is a case that is most likely years in the making before final resolution can be reached, especially considering Ireland intends to appeal this decision before EU courts.
In reaction, Drexel Hamilton top analyst Brian White reiterates a Buy rating on AAPL with a $185 price target, which represents a 73% increase from where the shares last closed.
White asserts, “Apple Remains Our Top Pick for H2:2016 and we believe this morning’s weakness on the EU decision represents another buying opportunity especially ahead of next week’s iPhone 7 event and a new iPhone cycle.”
While most companies might buckle under the weight of what can be deemed a substantial tax penalty, White points out that for the tech titan who exited its third quarter with $231.5 billion in cash, with 93% of cash flow overseas. and $84.9 billion in debt, this will not come anywhere near ending its reign in the market. For the fiscal year of 2015 alone, Apple boasted an operating cash flow of $81.3 billion and free cash flow of $70 billion.
Recommended Article: This Top Analyst Reiterates Buy on Apple Ahead of Rumored Upcoming iPhone 7 Launch
“We believe today’s news is one of the last pillars in the “gloom and doom” cycle that has engulfed the Apple story since the end of 2015 and into this summer. Similar to the summer of 2013, we believe this summer will prove to be a bottoming process for Apple’s stock with our estimates indicating that the sales and profit cycle bottomed in 3Q:FY16,” the analyst concludes.
According to TipRanks, which measures analysts’ and bloggers’ success rate based on how their calls perform, top five-star analyst Brian White has achieved a high ranking of #78 out of 4,129 analysts. White upholds a 62% success rate and realizes 9.3% in his annual returns. When recommending AAPL, White yields 20.0% in average profits on the stock.
TipRanks analytics demonstrate AAPL as a Strong Buy. Based on 36 analysts polled in the last 3 months, 31 rate a Buy on AAPL, 4 maintain a Hold, while 1 issues a Sell. The consensus price target stands at $125.63, marking a nearly 18% upside from where the stock is currently trading.