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Apple Inc (AAPL) Shares 'Most Traded' in 2014; Apple-IBM Deal To Boost Future iPad Sales.

Listed shares of Apple Inc. (AAPL) were the most traded stock of retail investors for the year with share price up 40 percent in the year. The stock split Apple announced in June had made it easier for small investors to trade the company's stock. The 7-to-1 stock split put Apple's stock under $100 compared to its previous $645 per share before the split.

According to a report from TD Ameritrade, aside from being the most traded stock, Apple stock is also a favourite among investors with Microsoft Corp coming in at fourth place based on investors' buy and hold. Facebook and Twitter stocks were also among the list of highly traded stocks but not among the top list of widely held stocks.

Apple shares have been given a consensus rating of "Buy" by 53 brokerage firms covering the Cupertino-based company. Two of the analysts have rated the stock with a "sell" rating while 11 maintained a "hold" rating, Valuewalk reported.

Several analysts have recently weighed on Apple shares with Oppenheimer analysts issuing a Buy rating on the company's stock. Analysts set a price target of $130 in an investors' note last week. Piper Jaffray analysts gave a price target of $135 for Apple stock while Stifel Nicolaus analysts predicted share prices to reach $130. Majority of analysts in previous reports agreed that Apple will maintain its momentum at least early in 2015 due to strong iPhone 6 sales and customer anticipation of the new Apple Watch.

Meanwhile, the deal between Apple and IBM was named the biggest tech story of 2014. In a ( Forbes report, mobile analyst Horace Deidu said the collaboration of the two companies to make a new generation of enterprise apps is "profoundly important."

The apps appear to be designed for users and the partnership between the two companies may possibly "energize" the software IBM sells to its customers and boost the sales of Apple's iPads that run the software. The analyst believes the partnership can help IBM launch a new product line to its customers. Apple can also benefit from the collaboration with the revival of iPad sales that have declined as more customers choose to not upgrade their tablets every year.

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Publication:International Business Times - US ed.
Date:Dec 29, 2014
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