Apple 2.0

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'I am so sick of Apple now I can barely stand reading about it'

June 26, 2013: 12:44 PM ET

A cry of despair from a long-time Apple investor.

chart_ws_stock_appleinc_2013626122752_240xaFORTUNE -- "No one is a bigger Apple fan than me. So before you read this please remember that I am referring to Apple stock, not Apple the company."

So writes a long-time member of Investor Village's AAPL Sanity board who calls himself "djt."

His cri de coeur, posted earlier this week under the heading "Why Apple is going down now -- my 2 1/2 cents," puts into words what so many retail Apple (AAPL) investors are feeling these days that with his permission I've reproduced it here in full.

He writes:

I think a dose of reality is called for.

Apple is going down now for two reasons: Apple related news and/or a total lack there of, and everything else.

The most obvious reason is because Apple is following the general market malaise, for the usual macro-economic reasons, combined with the seasonal go away and leave me the Hell alone while I drink gin & tonics all summer in the Hamptons.

I also believe there is more Apple fatigue right now than I can remember.

I say this because, as perhaps one of the staunchest Apple bulls, I too am so sick of this stock right now, I can barely stand even reading about it anymore. I have suffered such dramatic setbacks with each round of market dumping, that I wish I didn't own any of the toxic stuff.

Let's look at the facts:

The biggest stock buy-back in history plus a huge boost to their dividend barely budged the stock price, and by today's performance have not stopped the sell-off. Maybe it helped put a floor in it, but it's hard to say yet.

The Street, via various talking heads, analysts and pundits have plainly stated their POV. That Apple is no longer a growth company and so isn't the best place to invest anymore. And that until Apple launches a new product category that offers substantial income, the stock price is not going back up.

Tim Cook stated in the last [earnings release] conference call that there wouldn't be a new product (category) announced until maybe the Fall or next year. This Apple "news" comes after the stock had already been in purgatory for half a year.

So in so many words, Apple and the Street have prolaimed Apple is a dead stock for the summer. And the first day of summer was last Saturday.

Apple's WWDC has come and gone, without giving the Street any reason to believe it will improve Apple's potential for income or growth. (I'm referring to what the Street believes, not IT people or consumers.)

Analysts continue to lower their price targets, even at this extremely low valuation. Jefferies did it today.

I cannot think of any good reason why any investor would want to own Apple stock now. Except as a long-term bet for next year, or maybe for the dividend... except why risk holding it when the underlying stock price could go even lower? Apparently many traders think it's better to buy it just before the dividend pays out, and then dump it.

Sorry for all the negativity. But the facts speak for themselves. The Street thinks Apple stock is crap. At least for now.

Announcements for an Apple television, the China Mobile deal, and a more affordable iPhone, arguably could all turn the stock around. Maybe even quickly.

But based on what Tim Cook and the Street have said, this is going to be a long and painful summer.

Again, please excuse the bearish sentiment. But when you've been seriously mauled repeatedly, as I have, there comes a point when you have to call 'em as you see 'em.

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About This Author
Philip Elmer-Dewitt
Philip Elmer-DeWitt
Editor, Apple 2.0, Fortune

Philip Elmer-DeWitt has been following Apple since 1982, first for Time Magazine, and now on the Web for Fortune.com.

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