Analyst: 'AAPL Shares May Reflect Too Much Near-Term Cell Phone Optimism'

On Wednesday, American Technology Research analyst Shaw Wu pulled Apple from the AmTech Focus List, citing "too much near-term cell phone optimism" in light of a Sept. 5 report that contained optimistic comments about the so-called "iPhone" and helped spark a rally in the companyis shares. He had placed the company on that list of top stock picks on Sept. 5, but he told The Mac Observer via e-mail: "Now that the stock has greatly outperformed as we predicted, we believe it may be a little overbought near-term but remain a buyer on weakness."

Appleis stock has jumped 15% in the three weeks since Mr. Wuis previous report, compared to a 3% gain for the overall Nasdaq index. "We would not be surprised to see a near-term pullback and would be aggressive buyers at lower levels (low-$70s, high-$60s)," he wrote.

The analyst also provided some comments on Microsoftis upcoming Zune MP3 player, noting: "In our recent analysis, we have learned that the Zune portable media player and service will likely use a new proprietary Zune DRM that is incompatible with MSFTis PlaysForSure DRM that MSFT and its OEM partners, including Creative, SanDisk, Sony, Samsung, iRiver, Archos, etc., use. We believe the unexpected side effect will be further fragmentation in the Windows Media market, creating more confusion to consumers."

Mr. Wu added: "We remain underwhelmed with the much-hyped Zune, which is essentially a repackaged Toshiba Gigabeat. However, we believe Zune will likely see some modest success due to MSFTis vast resources and strong brand name, but at the expense of its Windows partners."

The analyst retained his "Buy" rating on Appleis stock, with a $91 target price. At 1:20 PM EST on Wednesday, the companyis shares were selling for $76.49, down 1.44% for the day.

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