Apple has conceded that consumers are waiting longer to upgrade their iPhones to the latest models. There's just not enough reason for many consumers to hit the buy button earlier in what is known as the iPhone replacement recycle. Maybe it should not be surprising, then, that there's a similar push and pull between investors and Apple stock as the company tries to convince the market to dial back up the exposure from its recent lows.
Apple's stock price has rallied this year, and since its earnings earlier this week, the stock has moved higher. But for investors wondering why a stock that was over $230 last October and became the first U.S. company ever to reach $1 trillion isn't being viewed by investors as cheap enough to more quickly bounce higher, the answer is fairly obvious. There just isn't much to get excited about right now when it comes to the world's most profitable company (and even after Apple reported its highest-ever quarterly earnings per share on Tuesday), according to a high profile analyst who broke down the results for CNBC.
Apple shares finished January up by 5.5 percent and closed at a price of $166 per share on Thursday. But the move up trailed many market measures. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished January up 7 percent, the S&P 500 was up close to 8 percent, and the Nasdaq finished the first month of 2019 up near 10 percent. The S&P's tech sub-sector was up roughly 7 percent for the month.
As of Friday morning, Apple's stock price remained in bear market levels (down more than 27 percent from its most recent 52-week high), though it was not alone — so are Facebook shares (down more than 25 percent even after its big beat earlier this week), and Amazon shares entered bear market territory on Friday after its post-earnings decline.