Apple reported another quarter of strong earnings after the market close yesterday, with quarterly profit up by 33 percent on the back of strong iPhone sales in the U.S. and China.
Apple also said that iPhone sales in greater China outpaced those in the U.S. for the first time, putting the firm on pace for its highest annual profit since 2012 -- a record -- and the company forecast sales in the current period that may exceed analysts’ estimates.
As analysts across Wall Street are sending out new research this morning, some are changing their price targets. The iPhone was a common theme in their notes, with Citi reiterating their buy on a "solid beat on iPhones" and Deutsche Bank maintaining their outperform in a note titled "How about Them Apples; Delivers Robust iPhone Results and $200 Billion Capital Return Program."
One of the analysts who is raising price targets is Brian White of Cantor Fitzgerald. White gives Apple a new target of $195 from a previous $180. The new price is currently the highest among analysts surveyed by Bloomberg and gives Apple a market cap of roughly $1.1 trillion.
In his note, titled "Powerful iPhone Cycle and Signs of Early Apple Watch Momentum," White credits the iPhone and a strong outlook for other innovations like the Apple Watch for his increased optimism.
We believe Apple is in the midst of a transformational, super cycle with a notably stronger iPhone cycle and initial strength around Apple Watch. The momentum of this iPhone cycle is notably stronger compared to those in the past, which we believe is driven by the larger screen sizes of the iPhone 6/6 Plus, combined with strength in emerging markets and the growing attraction of Apple's robust digital ecosystem. At the same time, recent media reports about an "Apple Car," combined with the opportunities we see for Apple in the TV and personal robot markets speaks to longer-term innovation opportunities. At the end of the day, we believe Apple is innovating like never before.
White also said that he believes the watch will become a huge success.
Adding to the allure of this cycle is the ramp of Apple Watch that we believe will prove to be the best selling new product in Apple's history (within first 12 months). As such, we are increasing our EPS estimates for Apple and raising our 12-month price target to $195.00 (from $180.00).
Shares of Apple are up more than 50 percent over the past year.