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Can Apple Save the Rally?

All eyes are on Apple with the technology company set to report its fourth-quarter earnings results after Tuesday's closing bell. On Wall Street, the question is whether Apple can surprise to the upside and save the rally?

Apple typically beats the Street by 30 percent, said Mike Abramsky, managing director of RBC Capital in Toronto. In this case, however, expectations were dramatically ramped up ahead of the quarter because the iPhone 4S came out later than expected. Although iPhone 4S sales won't come in until the next quarter, Abramsky noted Apple will likely guide conservatively, as it normally does. That said, Abramsky wouldn't add to positions in the short-term, but sees catalysts for the long-term.

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To trader Brian Kelly, Apple's earnings doesn't matter. After all, the iPhone 4S is selling "like crazy," so even if Apple posts a poor number, the market will assume next quarter is going to be great. If Apple posts strong fourth-quarter results, the Shelter Harbor co-founder said the market will say next quarter is going to be even better. Either way, it's a positive.

Apple is likely to report strong iPhone 4S sales next quarter, but trader Stephen Weiss is concerned about the iPad. Weiss thinks the tablet device faces tough competition from Amazon.com's Kindle Fire, which at $199, sells at a $300 discount to the iPad. The Kindle Fire may only be WiFi ready, but Weiss noted that up to 70 percent of all iPads are only WiFi.

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Trader Disclosures for Oct. 18, 2011:

STEVE WEISS
Weiss owns RIMM
Weiss owns KO
Weiss owns EUO

RICH ILCZYSZYN
Ilczyszyn owns ZSL

LIZ DUNN
(RL) : Macquarie Group Limited is currently providing Ralph Lauren Corporation with non-securities services.
Macquarie Group Limited or one of its affiliates received compensation for products and services other than investment advisory services from Ralph Lauren Corporation during the past 12 months. During this time, Macquarie Group Limited or one of its affiliates provided non-securities services to Ralph Lauren Corporation.

ED NAJARIAN
Neither ISI nor its affiliates beneficially own 1% or more of any class of common equity securities of the subject companies referenced in the Report. No person(s) responsible for preparing this Report or a member of his/her household serve as an officer, director or advisory board member of any of the subject companies. No person(s) preparing this report or a member of his/her household have a financial interest in the subject companies of this Report. At various times, the employees and owners of ISI, other than those preparing this Report, may transact in the securities discussed in this Report. Neither ISI nor its affiliates have any investment banking or market making operations. No person(s) preparing this research Report has received non-investment banking compensation form the subject company in the past 12 months. ISI does and seeks to do business with companies covered in this research Report and has received non-investment banking compensation in the past 12 months.

REBECCA PATTERSON
No disclosures

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