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Apple Still DJIA’s Best Performing Stock of 2017

Paul Ausick

Shares of Apple Inc. (AAPL) added 85 cents last week (0.6%), closing at $139.99 on Friday. The stock posted a new 52-week high on Thursday.

Although there is no official word from the company, an announcement is expected soon regarding refreshed designs for the iPad, with iPhone upgrades due in the fall.

Apple is expected to launch a new iPad Pro with a 10.5-inch display that will be the same physical size as the 9.7-inch model but incorporates a smaller bezel. Screen resolution will also be improved and the aspect ratio is also expected to change. Pricing is not set yet, but Apple watchers expect a price of $599 with a concomitant drop in the price of the current iPad Pro to $499.

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A new value version of the iPad is also rumored to be on the table. The 9.7-inch device would be priced at $299.

Neither device is likely to move the company's stock price much. Global tablet shipments continue to decline. IDC reported in February that shipments totaled 52.9 million units in the fourth quarter, down by 20% year over year. Full-year shipments declined more than 15% to 174.8 million units.

Apple continues to lead in global tablet shipments with 24.7% of the market in the fourth quarter, but that represents a year-over-year decline of 18.8% in unit shipments.

Apple's market cap is now over $734 billion, up more than $4 billion in the past week. Between last May, when the stock dropped to a 52-week low, and last week, the shares have added more than 56%.

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Apple shares closed at $139.99 on Friday in a 52-week range of $89.47 to $141.02. The consensus 12-month price target is $143.29 in a price target range of $102 to $185 per share.

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