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Top Apple-Related Stocks for 2012

Alternative Plays on Apple

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Apple (AAPL), maker of the wildly popular iPhone and iPad, leaped across the $500 billion mark in terms of market capitalization on Feb. 29, 2012, for the first time in its history. Its stock price – well past the $500-per-share threshold – continues to set new highs, seemingly on a regular basis. And it appears to be headed toward $600, and beyond, with the release of the iPad 3 and the iPhone 5. But if the stock seems too expensive, there are other ways to play an Apple rally. The “Fast Money”
Photo: Getty Images

Apple,maker of the wildly popular iPhone and iPad, leaped across the $500 billion mark in terms of market capitalization on Feb. 29, 2012, for the first time in its history. Its stock price — above the $600-per-share threshold — continues to set new highs, seemingly on a regular basis. It could be headed toward $700 and beyond, with the release of the iPhone 5 in the fall.

But if the stock seems too expensive, there are other ways to play an Apple rally.

The “Fast Money” pros have selected a few companies among Apple’s list of more than 150 suppliers. Here are their picks, which they made over the past couple of months.

By Bruno J. Navarro

Posted 7 March 2012

Skyworks Solutions (SWKS)

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“I think let’s go to the derivative plays – Skyworks, let’s talk about Broadcom,” said Stephanie Link, director of research and vice president of TheStreet. “These companies are going to benefit substantially from Apple’s strengths, so I think that those are kind of the backdoor ways to play it.” Skyworks Solutions produces technology for a broad range of applications, including smartphones, autos, medical, military and wi-fi uses. Based in Woburn, Mass., the company counts among its primary cus
Photo: Skyworksinc.com

“I think let’s go to the derivative plays — Skyworks, let’s talk about Broadcom,” said Stephanie Link, director of research and vice president of TheStreet. “These companies are going to benefit substantially from Apple’s strengths, so I think that those are kind of the backdoor ways to play it.”

Skyworks Solutions produces technology for a broad range of applications, including smartphones, autos, medical, military and wi-fi. Based in Woburn, Mass., the company counts among its primary customers such big names as Motorola, Nokia, Samsung, Research In Motion, HTC and, of course, Apple.

Skyworks had a market capitalization of $5.14 billion and EPS of $1.17.

For the most up-to-date figures, click here.

Technology SPDR (XLK)

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For less than $30 per share, you can actually own Apple – sort of. “XLK not only gets you broader technology exposure, but is 17 percent Apple specific,” said Patty Edwards, chief investment officer at Trutina Financial. The exchange-traded fund also offers additional Apple exposure through its other holidngs, which include AT&T (6.3 percent), Qualcomm (3.7 percent), Texas Instruments (1.4 percent ), Corning (0.75 percent ), Broadcom (0.66 percent ), and a host of others. “That’s a total of 30 p
Photo: Sectorspdr.com

For less than $30 per share, you can actually own Apple — sort of. “XLK not only gets you broader technology exposure, but is about 17 percent Apple specific,” said Patty Edwards, chief investment officer at Trutina Financial. The exchange-traded fund also offers additional Apple exposure through its other holdings, which include AT&T (6.3 percent), Qualcomm (3.7 percent), Texas Instruments (1.4 percent ), Corning (0.75 percent ), Broadcom (0.66 percent ) and a host of others.

“That’s a total of 30 percent of the ETF with direct or indirect Apple exposure for only $28.95 a share,” she said.

The XLK had a market capitalization of $9.43 billion and EPS of $1.75.

For the most up-to-date figures, click here.

Telecom Providers (T, VZ, CMCSA, TWC)

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“As more and more movies and other media come online specifically for Apple and the iTunes store, there’s going to be a rush for more and more bandwidth,” Edwards said. “Personally, whenever possible I’m using wi-fi, as opposed to going over the Verizon network. Either way, bandwidth prices are going up which bodes well for AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, Time Warner Cable.” Edwards, who held a long position in AT&T for clients, noted that Apple could be testing a limited high-definition, streaming movi
Photo: Etienne Franchi | AFP | Getty Images || Getty Images || Daniel Acker | Bloomberg | Getty Images

“As more and more movies and other media come online specifically for Apple and the iTunes store, there’s going to be a rush for more and more bandwidth,” Edwards said. “Personally, whenever possible I’m using wi-fi, as opposed to going over the Verizon network. Either way, bandwidth prices are going up, which bodes well for AT&T, Verizon, Comcast, Time Warner Cable.”

Edwards, who held a long position in AT&T for clients, noted that Apple could be testing a limited high-definition, streaming movie service.

(Comcast is the parent company of CNBC.)

Fusion-IO (FIO)

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Brian Kelly, Shelter Harbor Capital cofounder and managing partner, offered a stock with double-pronged strength. “Fusion-IO gets 24 percent of revenue from Apple,” he said. “As an added bonus, Facebook is a customer, too!” Fusion-IO produces flash technology that speeds up online response times. Kelly said that with a 4G iPad 3 on its way, users will be downloading more video, meaning that Apple will need faster servers – especially if it moves into the HD streaming video space. Based in Salt L
Photo: Peter Foley | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Brian Kelly, Shelter Harbor Capital co-founder and managing partner, offered a stock with double-pronged strength. “Fusion-IO gets 24 percent of revenue from Apple,” he said. “As an added bonus, Facebook is a customer, too.”

Fusion-IO produces flash technology that speeds up online response times. Kelly said that with a 4G iPad 3 on its way, users will be downloading more video, meaning that Apple will need faster servers – especially if it moves into the HD streaming video space.

Based in Salt Lake City, Fusion-IO had a market capitalization of about $2.7 billion and EPS of 17 cents.

For the most up-to-date figures, click here.

Cirrus Logic (CRUS)

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Joe Terranova, chief market strategist for Virtus Investment Partners, liked Cirrus Logic for one reason: “They produce integrated circuits for iPods and iPads,” he said. Integrated circuits were big business, too, with Cirrus Logic counting on Apple products for about half of its revenue. Based in Austin, Texas, Cirrus Logic had a market capitalization of $10.13 billion and EPS of $2.35.
Photo: Cirrus.com

Joe Terranova, chief market strategist for Virtus Investment Partners, liked Cirrus Logic for one reason: “They produce integrated circuits for iPods and iPads,” he said. Integrated circuits were big business, too, with Cirrus Logic counting on Apple products for about half of its revenue.

Based in Austin, Texas, Cirrus Logic had a market capitalization of $10.13 billion and EPS of $2.35.

For the most up-to-date figures, click here.

NXP Semiconductor (NXPI)

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Terranova also liked NXP Semiconductor, which produces near-field communication technology that he expects will dominate the mobile-payments arena. “It is suspected the iPhone 5 will contain this chip,” he said. Based in Eindhoven, Netherlands, the company’s market cap clocks in at $6.09 billion with EPS of negative 21 cents.
Photo: nxp.com

Terranova also liked NXP Semiconductor, which produces near-field communication technology that he expects will dominate the mobile-payments arena. “It is suspected the iPhone 5 will contain this chip,” he said.

Based in Eindhoven, Netherlands, the company’s market cap clocks in at $6.09 billion with EPS of negative 21 cents.

For the most up-to-date figures, click here.

Qualcomm (QCOM)

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Stephen Weiss of Short Hills Capital was bullish on Qualcomm, primarily from the revenue stream it sees from proprietary CDMS technology used in mobile devices. “They’re ramping up a partnership with Apple, getting their chips into the iPad and iPhone,” he said recently on “Fast Money.” Based in San Diego, Qualcomm held a market capitalization of $105.90 billion and EPS of $2.77.
Photo: Earl Cryer | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Stephen Weiss of Short Hills Capital was bullish on Qualcomm, primarily from the revenue stream it sees from proprietary CDMS technology used in mobile devices. “They’re ramping up a partnership with Apple, getting their chips into the iPad and iPhone,” he said recently on “Fast Money.”

Based in San Diego, Qualcomm held a market capitalization of $105.90 billion and EPS of $2.77.

For the most up-to-date figures, click here.

Apple (AAPL)

Ryan Anson | AFP | Getty Images

Weiss also espoused another strategy for playing Apple stock itself: Selling put options. Better suited to a more sophisticated investor, out-of-the-money puts — at, say $450 per share — could rake in gains.

The strategy, however, does come with some risk. Bet the wrong way and a retail investor could become obligated to shell out cash for the underlying stock option at $450 per share, or $45,000 for a typical 1,000-share trade.

Let the investor beware!

Trading Tips of the Pros

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