Apple shares closed at a record high Tuesday, hitting triple digits for the first time since September 2012.
The expected release of the iPhone 6 in the coming weeks drove the Cupertino, Calif.-based company’s shares up to $100.68 in mid-afternoon trading Tuesday, before closing at $100.54, the company’s highest mark ever when taking into account the 7-for-1 stock split in June.
The stock rose 1.4 percent on the day and beat the previous record closing price of $702.10, or $100.30, when the split adjustment was made Sept. 19, 2012, days before the release of the iPhone 5.
Multiple reports indicate that Apple is holding an iPhone event Sept. 9, which coincides with the company’s pattern of releasing a new iPhone each of the past two years around mid-September.
"[The stock price] follows from both their performance over the last year and the perceived pipeline of products coming in the fall," said Raul De Arriz, national government sales manager for Small Dog Electronics, Waitsfield, Vt., one of the top Apple specialists in the country. "Apple has stated that they have the most exciting pipeline in 25 years coming this fall. If that is true, that should be reason enough for interest."
De Arriz is referring to a statement made by Apple Senior Vice President Eddy Cue in late May at the Code Conference, at which he said, "Later this year, we've got the best product pipeline that I've seen in my 25 years at Apple."
Apple’s sales over the past year has kept investor expectations at an all-time high, said De Arriz, adding that if Apple enters the wearable market as many are expecting he expects the company will do exceptionally well.
"Their performance has been stellar," he said. "It signifies that the market is confident in the company. Apple will continue to do OK because of their nature and attention to quality. Having said that, there is an expectation that these new products will come out soon. If there is a wearable, no one else is really making any inroads with that market, so if Apple does release a wearable, that will be integrated with their whole ecosystem. If that hits, that will have a big impact as well, so there is only upside right now."
Some industry players have said Apple has not had a truly innovative product since the passing of former company CEO Steve Jobs, but Apple partners see the stock price boost as an answer to those critics.
"If people thought that Apple was really a 'has-been' company, I don’t think the stock would have reached $100. People don’t buy stock speculating about a company if they think they can no longer innovate," said Michael Oh, CEO of Tech Superpowers, an Apple partner based in Boston. "It will be interesting to see what happens in September. All indications point to a really big release for the holidays."
PUBLISHED AUG. 20, 2014