Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) was the recipient of a significant growth in short interest in August. As of August 31st, there was short interest totalling 48,108,995 shares, a growth of 23.0% from the August 15th total of 39,117,077 shares. Based on an average daily volume of 25,493,606 shares, the days-to-cover ratio is presently 1.9 days. Currently, 0.9% of the company’s stock are sold short.

Apple (NASDAQ AAPL) opened at 158.67 on Tuesday. The company has a 50-day moving average of $159.23 and a 200 day moving average of $149.72. Apple has a 12-month low of $104.08 and a 12-month high of $164.94. The firm has a market cap of $819.57 billion, a price-to-earnings ratio of 18.01 and a beta of 1.27.

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) last announced its quarterly earnings results on Tuesday, August 1st. The iPhone maker reported $1.67 earnings per share (EPS) for the quarter, topping analysts’ consensus estimates of $1.57 by $0.10. The business had revenue of $45.41 billion for the quarter, compared to analyst estimates of $44.94 billion. Apple had a net margin of 20.87% and a return on equity of 35.40%. The company’s revenue was up 7.2% on a year-over-year basis. During the same quarter last year, the firm earned $1.42 EPS. Equities analysts expect that Apple will post $9.01 EPS for the current fiscal year.

In other Apple news, SVP Johny Srouji sold 10,469 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Wednesday, August 16th. The stock was sold at an average price of $162.20, for a total value of $1,698,071.80. Following the transaction, the senior vice president now owns 76,250 shares in the company, valued at $12,367,750. The sale was disclosed in a filing with the Securities & Exchange Commission, which is accessible through the SEC website. Also, insider Daniel J. Riccio sold 11,949 shares of the business’s stock in a transaction dated Thursday, July 6th. The shares were sold at an average price of $142.86, for a total value of $1,707,034.14. The disclosure for this sale can be found here. Insiders sold 432,930 shares of company stock worth $69,008,577 in the last 90 days. Corporate insiders own 0.08% of the company’s stock.

Institutional investors and hedge funds have recently made changes to their positions in the company. GSB Wealth Management LLC purchased a new position in Apple during the 4th quarter valued at about $541,000. Westwood Holdings Group Inc. raised its holdings in Apple by 28.9% in the fourth quarter. Westwood Holdings Group Inc. now owns 395,197 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $45,772,000 after buying an additional 88,512 shares during the last quarter. Numeric Investors LLC raised its holdings in Apple by 99.0% in the fourth quarter. Numeric Investors LLC now owns 1,718,307 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $199,014,000 after buying an additional 854,920 shares during the last quarter. Jarislowsky Fraser Ltd raised its holdings in Apple by 18.1% in the fourth quarter. Jarislowsky Fraser Ltd now owns 21,351 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $2,472,000 after buying an additional 3,271 shares during the last quarter. Finally, Willis Investment Counsel raised its holdings in Apple by 5.7% in the fourth quarter. Willis Investment Counsel now owns 159,435 shares of the iPhone maker’s stock worth $18,466,000 after buying an additional 8,600 shares during the last quarter. 60.35% of the stock is currently owned by hedge funds and other institutional investors.

A number of analysts have weighed in on AAPL shares. UBS AG reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $170.00 price target on shares of Apple in a research report on Wednesday, May 31st. Canaccord Genuity reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $180.00 price target on shares of Apple in a research report on Wednesday, September 13th. Mizuho reaffirmed a “hold” rating and issued a $150.00 price target on shares of Apple in a research report on Monday. Guggenheim reaffirmed a “buy” rating and issued a $200.00 price target on shares of Apple in a research report on Monday. Finally, Royal Bank Of Canada reaffirmed an “outperform” rating and issued a $160.08 price target (down previously from $176.00) on shares of Apple in a research report on Wednesday, August 9th. Eleven equities research analysts have rated the stock with a hold rating and forty-four have assigned a buy rating to the company. The stock presently has a consensus rating of “Buy” and an average target price of $187.85.

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About Apple

Apple Inc (Apple) designs, manufactures and markets mobile communication and media devices, personal computers, and portable digital music players, and a variety of related software, services, peripherals, networking solutions, and third-party digital content and applications. The Company’s products and services include iPhone, iPad, Mac, iPod, Apple TV, a portfolio of consumer and professional software applications, the iOS and OS X operating systems, iCloud, and a variety of accessory, service and support offerings.

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