Citi Cuts AAPL Expectations, Keeps 'Buy' Rating

Citi analyst Richard Gardner on Tuesday retained his "Buy" rating on the stock but revised his forward-looking expectations for Apple, cutting his share price target from US$153 to $132 and reducing his estimates for the company's fiscal years 2009, 2010, and 2011. He said his changes "reflect a more conservative view of consumer spending," according to an Associated Press story.

Apple's 2009 fiscal year started on October 1, 2008. For that quarter, Mr. Gardner still expects the company to say it earned $1.42 per share when it makes its announcement on January 21, despite his view that iPhone shipments may have dropped from 6.9 million units during the previous quarter to below 4 million.

The analyst also thinks Apple's current quarter, which ends March 31, could result in the company missing Wall Street's averaged expectation of $1.13 per share by as much as 10 to 15 cents.