Harvard Liquidates Apple Stake After IPhone Sales Lose Steam

Harvard University, the world’s wealthiest university, has liquidated its stake in Apple Inc. as the iPhone maker’s shares tumbled after reaching a record high of $702.10 in September.

The university, which is based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and has a $30.7 billion endowment, sold shares valued at about $304,000, according to a quarterly filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The sale comes as growth in demand for the iPhone has lost steam and investors and consumers await new products from Tim Cook, the chief executive officer who replaced Steve Jobs.

Harvard’s endowment owns about $1.1 billion of publicly-traded securities, according to the filing that was released today and reflects the university’s holdings as of March 31. It also liquidated $42.3 million of shares in Warnaco Group Inc., as well as a number of exchange-traded funds.

Kevin Galvin, a spokesman for Harvard, declined to comment in an e-mail.

Among acquisitions by Harvard Management Co. in the first quarter was a $136.2 million stake in HJ Heinz Co. (HNZ), which is being acquired by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK/A) and Jorge Paulo Lemann’s 3G Capital.

Apple shares fell less than 1 percent to $452.97 at the close in New York. They are down 35 percent since the record high.

To contact the reporters on this story: Michael McDonald in Boston at mmcdonald10@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Lisa Wolfson at lwolfson@bloomberg.net.

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