Dec 15 2012, 1:00am CST | by Mark Raby
For most companies, the idea of a $500 stock price would make the CEO giddier than the giddiest schoolgirl. For Apple, though, it's a sign that there has been a huge decline in its value. After making history and setting new records on Wall Street, Apple's stock prices have been falling quickly. On Friday alone, they dropped by nearly $20, to $509.79.
Back in September, there was a very different storyline being painted about Apple's market value. It caused everyone's eyes to pop when it actually managed to eclipse $700. The highest end-of-day price that Apple stocks hit was $702, to be exact.
Unfortunately, it has kind of been downhill since then. Last week alone, Apple stock prices declined by about 10%. And all of this is coming at a time when you would expect most of the population to be more excited about Apple products than ever.
This is not exactly a direction that people had anticipated. Financial services group UBS had predicted Apple might see a stock price of as high as $780 in 2013. Analyst Steven Milunovich has now revised that to $700, which is of course lower than its top price of 2012.
A number of reasons have been suggested as to why Apple is seeing this reversal of fortune. The most common appears to be related to all the talk of the "fiscal cliff," which is just causing problems for companies in every industry. It wouldn't necessarily be something that Apple is doing wrong.
Also, though, it's suggested that Apple's profit margins are down, and that the company might be currently in a position of trying to acquire new customers instead of just sucking profit from its existing base. Or it could actually be that customers are starting to see the value in other devices like the Nexus 7, Kindle Fire, and Galaxy S III.
Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster seemed to be a bit more optimistic, though. "We are more optimistic about 2013 as we believe Apple will not only launch a television, but also a lower priced iPhone for prepaid markets in 2014 or potentially sooner," he wrote.
With more than 10 years as a professional writer, Mark Raby has an undeniable pulse on the latest trends. From the quiet rumors to the breaking news of the day, his eagle eye is always focused on the newest scoop and figuring out how and why the big newsmakers are noteworthy and relevant. He is based in New York City.
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