Bernstein Research Rates Apple as ‘Outperform’

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Bernstein Research analyst Toni Sacconaghi has selected Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) as one of his top information technology hardware company picks. According to a research note obtained by Barron’s, the analyst gave Apple an “Outperform” rating. Sacconaghi also featured Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) as a top pick and rated it as “Outperform.”

However, the analyst also noted that the California-based company was an underperformer in 2013, like many other IT hardware stocks. “We note that many mega-cap traditional technology vendors underperformed in 2013,” wrote the Bernstein Research analyst in a note seen by Barron’s. “In addition to International Business Machines (NYSE:IBM), Apple, EMC (NYSE:EMC), Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL) underperformed by 15 percent, Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO) by 15 percent and Accenture (NYSE:ACN) by 6 percent.”

“Large cap technology valuations remain in their lowest decile vs. history on both a cap weighted and equal weighted basis, although they have rebounded slightly from historic 35-year lows reached in June 2013,” wrote Sacconaghi via Barron’s. “Low-growth tech stocks materially outperformed high-growth tech stocks in 2013, and the valuation delta between the two is now in line with historical averages.”

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