In his latest column for Forbes.com, Validea CEO John Reese says that, despite the pounding Apple’s shares have taken in recent months, investors shouldn’t give up on the tech titan.
“Slowing sales growth, two straight quarters of declining earnings, and questions about the company’s post-Steve Jobs leadership have all sent investors heading for the hills, thinking that Apple’s best days are behind it,” Reese writes. “I think they’re probably right — and I’m still bullish on Apple.”
Reese says that, while it would be nearly impossible for Apple to duplicate the run it’s had over the past decade, that shouldn’t be a surprise. “The next company that posts phenomenal growth with a pristine balance sheet and never has a hiccup or slowdown will be the first,” he says. “Frankly, that’s just not how things work. Good companies go through short-term problems. Sometimes, they get so big that they just can’t keep growing at the same pace — Warren Buffett has told Berkshire Hathaway shareholders not to expect the same kind of returns from Berkshire going forward, simply because of its sheer size.”
Reese says that Apple may be transitioning from a fast-growing firm to what mutual fund grade Peter Lynch called a stalwart — a big, moderate growth firm with attractively valued shares. Lynch said that many fast growers end up making such a transition. “Because investors tend to be so myopic, they often don’t acknowledge that natural transition,” Reese says. “They see slowing or declining growth as a sign that a company is headed for doom, and they sell shares in what may still be very good businesses — even if they are attractively priced. I think that’s what’s going on with Apple right now.”
Reese uses his Guru Strategies, each of which is based on the approach of a different investing great, to analyze Apple, as well as four other firms that have made the transition from fast-growing dynamo to steady stalwart. To read the full article, click here.