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Brian White: Blaming Apple Management Is An 'Easy Out'

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Brian White: Blaming Apple Management Is An 'Easy Out'
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Drexel Hamilton's Brian White told Benzinga that blaming Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL)'s management has become an "easy out."

In a phone call Monday morning, White noted a potential car, Apple Pay and Apple Music as recent "innovative products." He said the Apple Watch is the best smartwatch on the market.

In a note earlier January, Global Equities' Trip Chowdhry called for the "completely clueless" Tim Cook to be replaced. He cited a culture of "bozos" at Apple destroying $486 billion in shareholder value under Cook's management.

The lack of positive yearly stock performance was the market's way of telling Cook they will not support a distracted CEO. Chowdhry used Cook's Charlie Rose appearance debating taxation alongside Apple's decision to take on debt and tarnish "the once pristine Apple balance sheet" as examples of Cook's lack of focus on shareholder value. He also called the board of directors "callous" in their concern about the company PE multiple.

Shares traded recently at $100.67. The stock started to correct itself on January 21 after a steep selloff throughout the first month of 2016.

Related Link: Street Is Modeling For Apple's Largest Sequential Q2 Sales Decline In 18 Years

Separately in a note on Monday, White maintained his bullish outlook on the tech giant and believe "Apple fever" remains strong in China. He also sees India as growing importance for the smartphone market. Drexel Hamilton expects the company to sell 77.5 million iPhone units in 1QFY16, with Apple Watch sales estimated to be 7.7 million units during the quarter.

In the note, White mentioned that Apple's stock already reflects incremental weakness in the company's March quarter performance. The analyst believes that 2QFY16 would be the trough in the company's sales and operating profit cycle.

In the phone call with Benzinga, White also mentioned that Apple could eventually begin creating personal robots.

White holds a Buy rating and $200 price target on the stock.

Garrett Cook contributed to this report.

Latest Ratings for AAPL

DateFirmActionFromTo
Apr 2017Morgan StanleyMaintainsOverweightOverweight
Apr 2017Credit SuisseMaintainsOutperformOutperform
Apr 2017Pacific CrestMaintainsOverweight

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