The iPhone cycle will disappoint this year, according to one Wall Street analyst, who issued a rare downgrade of one of the market’s most popular stocks.
Longbow Research lowered its rating for Apple shares to neutral from buy, predicting the company will ship less iPhones than expected in fiscal 2018.
We are “seeing only a good, not great iPhone cycle,” analyst Shawn Harrison wrote in a note to clients Wednesday. “Apple found iPhone price elasticity with the introduction of the X blunting some demand. Reception of the iPhone 8/8Plus was lukewarm with Apple shifting production back toward the iPhone 7 as a result.”
The analyst reduced his fiscal 2018 iPhone unit shipment forecast to 233 million from 248 million versus the Wall Street consensus of 239 million.
Apple shares fell 0.3 percent in Wednesday’s premarket session after the report.
The last time Apple was downgraded was by Nomura Instinet on Dec. 19 to neutral from buy, which cited the company’s high valuation compared with previous iPhone cycles.
Apple’s stock is up 50 percent the last 12 months.
Apple gets rare downgrade because analyst believes iPhone cycle is just 'good, not great'