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Is Apple stock really a no-brainer?

Tuesday, 1 Oct 2013 | 6:18 PM ET
Is Apple stock really a no-brainer?
Tuesday, 1 Oct 2013 | 5:00 PM ET
After shares of Apple were called a sure thing by top investors Carl Icahn and Bill Miller, the "Fast Money" traders weigh in.

Top investors Carl Icahn and Legg Mason's Bill Miller both called Apple a "no-brainer" on Tuesday, but is there such a thing?

"This is all about the cash," Jim Lebenthal of Lebenthal Asset Management said. "It's that fortress-like balance sheet. It's the cash."

On CNBC's "Fast Money," Lebenthal addressed the time frame that would make Apple a winning play.

(Read more: Why Bill Miller loves Apple and Microsoft)


Bull vs. bear on Ford
"Fast Money" trader Jim Lebenthal says Ford is one of the best American companies and makes the bull case, while trader Brian Kelly thinks the stock has had a great run, but sales are slowing.

"I know you're saying, 'Well, what's going to make it move tomorrow?' It's not necessarily tomorrow. It's over the next six to 12 months that that cash just keep coming in," he said. "And think about this: Each quarter, they generate enough cash to buy two BlackBerrys. In a full year, they generate enough cash to buy Hewlett-Packard."

Dan Nathan of RiskReversal.com gave Icahn's reasoning more weight.

(Read more: 'I'm not going away': Icahn on Apple)

"Here, he's establishing a position after the stock is down 40 percent from the all-time highs a year ago," he said. "Bill Miller has owned this thing. He owned the pig the whole way up and the whole way down. I'd kind of take his comments with a grain of salt."

By CNBC's Bruno J. Navarro. Follow him on Twitter @Bruno_J_Navarro.

Trader disclosure: On Oct. 1, 2013, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC's "Fast Money" were owned by the "Fast Money" traders: Jim Lebenthal is long AAPL; Jim Lebenthal is long BAC; Jim Lebenthal is long GS; Jim Lebenthal is long JPM; Jim Lebenthal is long WFC; Jim Lebenthal is long MS; Jim Lebenthal is long INTC; Jim Lebenthal is long WMT; Jim Lebenthal is long FB; Jim Lebenthal is long MRK; Jim Lebenthal is long F; Jim Lebenthal is long DIS; Jim Lebenthal is long CMCSA; Jim Lebenthal is long TWX; Jim Lebenthal is long CZR; Jim Lebenthal is long NLY; Jim Lebenthal is long BA; Brian Kelly is long treasury ; Brian Kelly is long gold; Brian Kelly is long natural gas; Dan Nathan is long AAPL; Dan Nathan is long NFLX; Dan Nathan is long TSLA; Dan Nathan is long GM; Dan Nathan is long MSFT; Dan Nathan is long WFM; Dan Nathan is long ZNGA; Dan Nathan is long XCO; Dan Nathan is long calls VIX short puts VIX ; Dan Nathan is long calls XOM; Guy Adami is long C; Guy Adami is long GS; Guy Adami is long INTC; Guy Adami is long MSFT; Guy Adami is long AGU; Guy Adami is long NUE; Guy Adami is long BTU; Guy Adami's wife, Linda Snow, works at Merck; Yaron Werber is long GILD; Yaron Werber is long CELG.

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Halftime Report

  • Jay Yarow, The Business Insider, and Steve Milunovich, UBS, discuss whether Tim Cook is to blame for Apple's drop in growth. I think it's pretty clear they missed the big phone market and overestimated the success of the plastic 5C phone, says Milunovich.

  • CNBC's Eamon Javers reports on Bill Ackman's stake in Allergan. Javers says this is a classic case of insider trading that is not against the rules.

  • FMHR trader Josh Brown thinks Dunkin' Brands looks fantastic technically, while Mike Murphy says investors are questioning the company's massive expansion plans.