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Alex Cho

Apple earnings Preview: Credit Suisse Reaffirms $170 Price Target

Kulbinder Garcha just released his Apple earnings preview note a couple days ago, and while he’s more bullish on his recommendation. He also acknowledges that Q2’17 could prove to be a surprise quarter. He also reaffirmed his outperform rating on Apple shares and $170 price target.

Here were the key highlights from the research note:

Results on Tuesday, May 2, maintain Outperform. Our F2Q17 revenue/EPS estimates are $52.8bn/$2.05. We believe that recent data points from the supply chain suggest that overall iPhone shipments remain in line to ahead of expectations, with potential for a stronger mix. We expect a modest increase in capital return. We continue to highlight a degree of pent up demand from iPhone installed base ahead of the major iPhone 8 super cycle as well as continued strong mix shift towards Services (see our recent deck Apple Services Update).

We reiterate our Outperform rating and PT of $170. Valuation. We see Apple trading cheaply on a P/E ex-cash basis (~11x on CY18 EPS). Given the Services growth and an installed base that could reach ~1.5bn LT, we see sustainable free cash flow of ~$75bn LT with a valuation of $170.

I’m slightly less optimistic on valuation, but I do anticipate that results will deliver above consensus. The scope of the beat is difficult to articulate currently given the reduction in week, but better sell-in going into the next quarter when compared to seasonal trends.

I’m optimistic on Apple, precisely because the consensus is take a very measured approach with managing expectations going into this upcoming quarter.

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