New York: Benefiting from its expensive 'plus' models and rising demands of its products, Apple Inc will be worth at least $824 billion this year, analysts have predicted.
Apple's shares already soared more than 16 per cent to fresh highs during the second quarter but analysts are optimistic the stock has much more room to grow, MarketWatch reported on Monday.
Canada-based global investment bank RBC Capital Markets on Monday lifted its 12-month price target to $157 from $155 and reiterated an outperform rating. That would increase Apple's market capitalisation to $824 billion from $740 billion currently.
Apple's stock hit a record high of $144.77 on April 4, the report said. RBC analyst Amit Daryanani also increased his March-quarter iPhone estimates and fiscal 2017 revenue estimates, saying trends indicate consumer preference for Apple's more expensive plus models, which have contributed positively to average selling prices.
While the company's third-quarter outlook "could come modestly below estimates" as consumers delay planned upgrades ahead of the iPhone 8 launch in September, its large installed base and attractive valuation make it worthy of investment despite muted expectations.
Analyst at Pacific Crest Andy Hargreaves suggested that Apple is struggling with the optical fingerprint functionality expected on the OLED iPhone, which could lead to delays or the removal of it. "While this creates some risk of production delays, at this point we do not believe it materially threatens volume through the coming iPhone cycle," Hargreaves was quoted as saying.
According to a report in USA Today, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak believed that Apple, Google and Facebook will be bigger in 2075 and dominate the world. Shares of Apple inched 0.6 per cent higher to $141.12 on Monday.
The company will announce its earnings for the second fiscal quarter (first calendar quarter) of 2017 on May 2. Apple had $246.1 billion cash at the end of its last fiscal quarter.