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Citing signs of improving demand for iPhones in China, expected new products and an expected increase in services, Wedbush has again raised its price target for Apple shares.
In early 2023, Wedbush lowered his Apple price target from $200 to $175, saying that while Apple was in a strong position, it faced uncertain economic conditions. After Apple’s latest financial results in February, it raised the price to $180 and has now raised it back to $190.
In a note to investors seen by AppleInsiderdescribes Wedbush Apple as now “a stable Cupertino vessel in rough macro waters.”
The description and price hike follows how Wedbush’s “Asia iPhone supply chain controls have become incrementally more positive this week”. The company’s research shows “a modest increase in demand from China…with a clear recovery in demand in this important region after December, despite the uncertain macroeconomic situation.”
Wedbush analysts also say there is no sign of significant cutbacks in iPhone production, “which is a good sign showing a steady demand curve on the flagship iPhone 14 Pro.”
Looking ahead, Wedbush says “a number of levers potentially abound for Apple.” Those include “notable” new announcements, including an Apple AR headset “launching by summer” and “hardware subscription plan [being] revealed.”
However, beyond a possible hardware subscription, Wedbush expects “some new hardware launches on the Mac product line in 2023.”
iPhone 15 is expected to have a smoother launch than iPhone 14
The company also believes the next iPhone is likely to do well. That’s partly because “we estimate that about 25% of current iPhones installed haven’t upgraded their iPhone in 4+ years,” but there’s more reason to expect an increase in sales.
“With the highly anticipated anniversary edition iPhone 15 launching in September,” says Wedbusy, “the handover of the baton from iPhone 14 to iPhone 15 appears to be a more stable transition than some other peak-to-trough iPhone cycles of the past. “
The company does not expect a commemorative edition of the iPhone when it talks about ‘anniversary’. Rather, it seems to refer to the annual release cycle.
Wedbush also predicts that Apple’s “Services business [is] expect an acceleration in FY24,” and that this comes from “another 100 million+ new iPhone users…added in the last 15 months.”
“Apple’s gold installed base provides more stability in this uncertain macro and remains key to our bullish position,” the company’s analysts say.
Wedbush’s reasoning behind the price hike is almost identical to the equally positive report recently released by JP Morgan.