Can Apple Never Touch $700 Again?

With Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) having slid almost $250 from its $700-level perches, investment specialist Howard Gold was not giving the iPhone maker much chance of reclaiming those levels. The columnist wrote at Minyanville that with tailwinds having turned into headwinds, Apple’s “competitive position [had] seriously weakened.” The company had lost its mantle of being the greatest growth stock of this era and may no longer even be a growth stock, Gold added. He gave four reasons for why he thought Apple’s stock would never see $700 again.

The first was the slowing growth in iPhone sales with the increased competition. “Growth has decelerated dramatically, from well over 100 percent year-over-year in the third quarter of fiscal 2011” to 30 percent in the last quarter, Gold wrote. At the same time, Samsung (SSNLF.PK) was gaining also ground while the larger market was slowing.

Secondly, margins were shrinking. For instance, the new iPad Mini was likely cannibalizing sales of the larger iPad, lowering the average selling price by $101 and hurting gross margins, Gold said.

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