The stock price of Apple is down over 17% over the past year (YTD), compared to the S&P 500’s drop of 13.3%. This is due to the tightening financial conditions that continue to weigh on stocks.
As the macro environment becomes more tech-friendly, the bulls hope Apple’s massive stock buyback program and the company’s recent hike in dividend payments can spur the stock price up once again.
In its fiscal 2021, Apple repurchased $85.5 billion worth of shares. With a stock buyback approval of $90 billion, Apple is likely to continue repurchasing its shares at affordable prices as a result of the lower prices.
In terms of software, the iPhone and iPad both get their annual upgrades. On the iPhone, iOS 16 was released. The new lock screen is the “biggest update ever to the lock screen, completely reimagining how it works,” says Craig Federighi, Apple’s SVP of software engineering. Among the significant features of iOS 16 will be the ability to customize lock screens with widgets and other personalization options.
In the meantime, investors will be watching Apple’s supply chain issues and recent Chinese lockdowns. While iPhone demand remains strong, the App Store will continue to post revenue growth, maintaining the bullish case for Apple stock.
It has been a while since Apple held its long-awaited WWDC22 event, but there were no big surprises this year. Nevertheless, the Cupertino-based tech titan distributed a new M2 chip for MacBook, announced the iOs 16 update for iPhone and introduced its own BNPL service.
The bulls hope that further innovation will accelerate sales growth and contribute to the continuation of the Apple stock buyback program.
ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM)
Positive analyst updates are helping ExxonMobil (NYSE: XOM) gain traction in the stock market. Since XOM’s stock continues to trade near its all-time high of $103.43 per share, this may be the case. According to analysts over at Evercore ISI (NYSE: EVR), the company is receiving praise. According to Evercore analyst Stephen Richardson, XOM stock will reach $120 per share from $88 per share. Also, Richardson upgrades the company’s stock to a Buy rating from a Hold rating.
A recent price target increase for XOM stock was also made by Credit Suisse (NYSE: CS) to $115 from $102. Furthermore, the firm is also raising its operating earnings per share estimates for the entire year. Credit Suisse notes that natural gas prices are rising as a result. Furthermore, ExxonMobil continues to move forward on an operational level as well. Yesterday, the company became a shareholder in the world’s largest liquefied natural gas project off the coast of Qatar. The project will be expanded along with Shell (NYSE: SHEL) and ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP). In that regard, I think the XOM stock will be the focus of attention at today’s opening bell.
DocuSign Inc. (NASDAQ: DOCU)
Shares of DocuSign Inc. (NASDAQ: DOCU), a provider of cloud-based signature and contract management software, have declined by around 62% since last year. With more than a 25% gain since posting a 52-week low in mid-May, the stock is poised to rise after Microsoft announced Tuesday it would integrate DocuSign’s cloud-based products with Microsoft products like Teams, Word, and 365. On Tuesday, shares rose more than 4%, and in premarket trading Wednesday, they rose nearly 5%.
Nineteen brokerages cover the shares, with 10 having Buy or Strong Buy ratings and eight having Hold ratings. With a recent share price of $87.75, the upside potential based on a median price target of $97.50 would be 11.1%. The high price target of $108.00 would represent a 23.1% upside potential.
Forecasts indicate revenue of $581.85 million for the fiscal first quarter, which would increase by 0.2% sequentially and by 24.0% when compared with the same period last year. Analysts expect adjusted earnings per share (EPS) of $0.46, a decrease of 3.8% sequentially, but an increase of 4.5% over the prior year. According to DocuSign, the company expects EPS of $1.96, down about 1%, on sales of $2.48 billion, up 17.6%, for the full fiscal year ending in January 2023.
In 2025, DocuSign is expected to earn $2.87 per share, trading at 30.6 times expected earnings in 2024 and 38.3 times expected earnings in 2023. In the past 52 weeks, the stock has traded between $64.84 and $314.76. Currently, the company doesn’t pay a dividend and has had a negative shareholder return for the past year.
Vail Resorts (MTN:NYSE)
In the six weeks following the Coronavirus outbreak, Vail Resorts Inc. shares dropped by 47%. By November last year, the stock had risen by 50%. From February 2020 through Tuesday’s closing, the shares have fallen by 30%, and, for the entire period, the stock has risen by about 5%. Analysts expect the company to report results that are primarily in line with expectations but will pay more attention to sales of ski season passes when winter arrives. Developing an overall growth story in an established business is challenging.
There are just 11 brokerages that cover the company, and seven of them rate it as a Hold. Of the other four brokerages, four rate their shares as Buys. If the share price were to reach $257.70, the upside potential would be about 12.3%. If the share price were to reach $379.00, the upside potential would be about 47%.
Forecast revenue for the third quarter is $1.16 billion, an increase of 27.6% sequentially and 30.0% year over year. EPS is forecast at $9.01, a sequential increase of nearly 65% and a year-over-year gain of about 34.1%. The company is expecting to post EPS of $8.15 on sales of $2.49 billion, an increase of 30.4%.
At current prices, the stock is trading at 31.6 times expected EPS in 2022, 28.8 times estimated earnings of $8.94 in 2023, and 25.3% times estimated earnings of $10.24 in 2024. Stock prices range from $221.38 to $376.24 over 52 weeks. The annual dividend for Vail Resorts is $1.76 (a yield of 2.96%). Last year, shareholders returned a negative 21.9%.