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HSBC takes bearish stance on Apple TV+, downgrades the stock

Erwan Rambourg wrote that the iPhone maker is 'late to the game' on its service offerings
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HSBC cut the tech titan's rating to Reduce from Hold

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) was downgraded to the equivalent of sell by an HSBC analyst who called the iPhone maker “late to the game” with its new media offerings.  

Erwan Rambourg cut the iPhone maker’s rating to Reduce from Hold in a research note Wednesday.

The analyst, however, raised his price target to $180 from $160 — nearly 10% lower than the company’s Tuesday closing price.

Apple shares were flattish at $199.64 at midday.

READ: Apple maintained at Outperform as Wedbush says streaming service could attract 100M customers

Rambourg credited the tech titan’s unveiling of Apple TV+ and other services including Apple News+, Apple Arcade and the Apple Card. However, the note was bearish about the company’s ability to generate returns from those services anytime soon.

“While the new offerings may garner consumer attention, we do not expect these services to move the needle significantly,” Rambourg wrote. “We believe Apple has come too late to the game.”

HBSC was also doubtful that the offerings would convert enough new customers to Apple products, even if it did increase loyalty among their existing ones.

The note estimates the services will represent 4% of Apple’s valuation, hence the uptick in price target.

Contact Andrew Kessel at [email protected]

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