Does Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) serve your interest?

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We are going to take a close look at Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) today to get a better sense of the company and its current status, as well as the opportunity it may offer for prospective investors. Today’s focus will be a fundamental evaluation of the stock from top to bottom.

As such, let’s start with the top line: Revenue trends.

Last quarter, the company saw its overall sales move to $78.25B in total revenues. That represents an overall change in revenues, on a quarterly year/year basis, of 0.04%. If we translate that into sequential terms, the company saw sales grow by 0.4% from quarter to quarter.

It’s important to closely track the top line data. There?s no better way to measure the end market?s reception of a company?s products. But no one truly wins without bottom line success, which is what we need to look at next.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is intriguing when broken down to its core data. The cost of selling goods last quarter was $48.16B, yielding a gross basic income of $30.09B. For shareholders, given the total diluted outstanding shares of 5.33B, this means an overall earnings per share of $3.36. Note, this compares with a consensus analyst forecast of $1.62 in earnings per share for its next fiscal quarterly report.

Given that data, we now turn to a more thorough glance across analyst expectations for the company going forward.

At present, analysts hold a consensus average recommendation of Overweight. This is based on a total of 43. While we don’t suggest taking analyst recommendations as face value plans for action in a portfolio, we do think it is important to note where consensus is on a stock to understand what basic assumptions are perhaps already discounted into market pricing of shares of the stock.

As far as price targets, analysts currently have an average target on shares of at $153.86. In addition, if we turn to next year, we see estimates of a fiscal year forecast to bring about 10.29 in total earnings per share. On a median price to earnings ratio basis, that outlook adds up to a valuation of $13.89 times earnings.

At this point, we?ve taken a thorough look at this company from top to bottom, and gotten a sense of what analysts are expecting. But underneath it all, when push comes to shove, companies make it through tough times on balance sheet strength. With that in mind, we should take a look under the hood here.

As the reader is no doubt aware, for any company, balance sheet health sits at the heart of the company’s capacity to stand up to the demands and obligations incurred by normal and contingent operations, which in turn lies at the core of a company’s ability to retain the faith of investors in the marketplace. For Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), the company presently holds about $16.04B in cash in the coffers. That cash is balanced against about $13.99B in total current liabilities.

It’s important to consider both a static and dynamic picture, particularly where debt levels are concerned. This means, we need to take into account any trends. In this case, the company?s debt has been $growing. The company also has $331.14B in total assets, balanced by $198.75B in total liabilities, which suggests where this story might go under adverse economic or financial conditions.

As far as cash flows, the company saw a free cash flow last quarter of $23.72B, representing a quarterly net change in cash of $(4.11B). On a net operating level, the company saw about $27.06B in cash flow.

Let’s take a look at the technical analysis.

The Barchart Technical Opinion rating is a 100% Buy with a Strongest short term outlook on maintaining the current direction. Longer term, the trend strength is Maximum. Long term indicators fully support a continuation of the trend. The market is approaching overbought territory. Be watchful of a trend reversal.

Apple is scheduled to report earnings on Tuesday afternoon, where analysts expect revenues of more than $7 billion in services. The company is expected to report $2.01 per share on $52.6 billion in revenues, up 5.9% and 4.1% from the year-earlier levels, respectively.

We will update the interesting story of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) as new events transpire.

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