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Apple Price Targets Rise With $3 Trillion Milestone in View

(Bloomberg) — Apple Inc. analysts just keep getting more bullish, with Bank of America Corp. on Tuesday upgrading the iPhone maker to buy on the revenue opportunity from virtual reality products.

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The shares gained 0.8%, with BofA analyst Wamsi Mohhan also setting a $210 price target that matches JPMorgan Chase & Co. as the highest on the Street. Apple shares have rallied throughout 2021, with the stock up 33%. The stock needs to rise about 4% from Monday’s close in order to hit a historic $3 trillion market valuation.

BofA’s positive view is based on the expectation that Apple will launch an augmented reality/virtual reality headset by early 2023. “We view this technology as a game-changer as it will enable many new applications which will require high performance hardware and higher access speeds,” Wamsi wrote in a note.

The analyst expects Apple’s multiple to re-rate higher ahead of an AR/VR product launch — as has been the case with previous major new products — and also sees capital returns remaining strong.

Analysts have been boosting Apple price targets over the past few weeks, bringing the average to about $173, compared with $167.48 at the end of November. At current levels, Apple shares are more than 2% above the average.

Also on Tuesday, Evercore ISI raised its target to $200 from $180. It named Apple as a top pick for 2022, seeing “room for sustained upside.” On Monday, JPMorgan raised its price target to $210, touting the potential of the iPhone SE 5G model. CFRA also raised its target, writing that consensus expectations for Apple “likely appear too conservative.” Last week, Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty cited VR products and autonomous vehicles as the reason for her price target hike.

(Updates with market open, adds comments from Evercore.)

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