ACI Research Chief Executive Officer Edward Zabitsky may be one of the most notorious Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) bears out there. Three years ago, when the stock was trading around $200 and deep in the throes of an uptrend, he put a Sell rating on the stock and has maintained his position ever since.
It’s not hard to do some math that suggests Zabitsky’s Sell rating was premature, to say the least. Just to get it out of the way: even with 35 percent losses on the chart over the past six months, Apple stock is up 125 percent since February of 2010. At maximum, investors who bought when he said to sell could have realized a 250 percent return on their money.
That said, Zabitsky is sticking to his guns and maintains a $274 price target on Apple shares, a 40.6 percent downside on Tuesday’s closing price of $461.14. For comparison, the mean analyst target is $618.72, a 34.2 percent upside from the same price. The most bearish of the estimates going into that average is $420, while the most bullish is $888. Just one analyst out of the 46 has a Sell rating on the stock, while 2 have an Underperform rating.
All in all, it would seem that no matter how much the stock has been beat up over the past few months, Wall Street disagrees with Zabitsky. Speaking to MarketWatch, Zabitsky explained his reasoning…