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Apple shares to close year with worst performance since 2008

Posted by: Admin | Posted on: December 31st, 2015 | 0 Comments

NEW YORK Shares of Apple Inc, the largest U.S. company by market value, are set to finish the year in the red on notable weakness for a stock that had largely been impervious to pain for several years.

* Apple Inc shares are on track to finish the year down 4 percent, its first down year since 2008.

* Shares have shed about a fifth of their value since touching a high of $134.54 on April 28, and are down 17.5 percent since the inclusion of the stock in the Dow Jones industrial average in March.

* Declines this year have wiped out about $57 billion in Apple’s market capitalization, about as much as fellow Dow component DuPont Co is worth. Apple is currently worth about $590 billion.

* Headed into the last day of trading, the SP 500 was up 0.22 percent for the year-to-date. Excluding Apple, the index would be up 0.31 percent, according to Howard Silverblatt, senior index analyst at SP Dow Jones Indices.

* Longer term, Apple remains a boost for the index. For 2014, the SP rose 11.39 percent. Without Apple? It would have risen only 10.59 percent. Since the bear market low on March 9, 2009, the SP is up 204.99 percent, but losing Apple would mean it would have gained just 197.63 percent, Silverblatt said.

* During its six-year run of gains, the stock has risen by at least 25 percent in five of those years.

* Billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn, who first disclosed a significant stake in Apple in August 2013, owned about 52.76 million shares as of Sept 30. On that day, the stake was worth $5.82 billion.

* Wall Street analysts’ still love the stock. Of 49 brokerages, 41 have a positive rating and none hold a “sell” rating. Analysts have a median price target of $145 – implying a gain of nearly 40 percent from current levels.

(Reporting by Saqib Iqbal Ahmed; Editing by Dan Grebler)

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