AAPL Stock: This Report Will Shock Apple Stock Bears

AAPL StockNew Report Bears Glad Tidings for AAPL Stock

An uptrend is once again building in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) stock on the back of some good news. The latest news headline is a positive research report from one analyst.

Apple has lately become one of the most-discussed subjects at table talks (after, of course, Donald Trump’s nomination). Its standoff with the FBI has garnered a lot of support for the company and AAPL stock.

Adding to its upside is Tim Cook’s promise, which he made at the company’s annual meeting last week. The Apple CEO said that he’s committed to returning value to shareholders. He has confirmed that the company will be raising its quarterly dividends.

In the midst of these bigger events, there’s a relatively smaller news headline that got swept under the carpet.

Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster has recently penned a first-hand research report on Apple’s fast-growing service “Apple Pay.” His research bore some promising revelations on the service.

Before I get to it, recall that Apple Pay is part of Apple’s services segment. This segment, albeit contributing only eight percent to Apple’s revenue mix, is currently its second-fastest-growing business segment on a year-over-year basis.

In fact, this segment is expected to grow to complement its hardware business as Apple continues to expand its “iOS” ecosystem. The plan is to gain a strong footing in the “Internet of Things” (IoT) industry, where daily-use Apple devices will electronically connect and communicate with each other and other machines.

For a better perspective, take the example of Apple Pay. The service allows you to use your “iPhone,” “Apple Watch,” “iPad,” or “iPod” for financial transactions, including making payments to merchants at designated points of sale (POS) or transferring money to your friends. No need for a wallet anymore! (And no excuse if you forget your wallet…)

The Piper Jaffray analyst surveyed more than 500 merchants that accept Apple Pay and found that 44% of their customers were either using or planned to use a mobile wallet solution. And the best part is that a whopping 67% of these customers wanted to use Apple Pay. (Source: “Apple Pay Most Requested By Merchants Adopting Mobile Wallets: Piper Jaffray,” Barrons, March 2, 2016.)

Munster’s research revealed that Apple’s competition faded in comparison to the strong demand for Apple Pay. Munster found that only 18% of these customers requested “Android Pay,” while demand for PayPal and “Samsung Pay” was a meager eight percent and seven percent, respectively.

The Bottom Line on AAPL Stock

After its success in the U.S., Apple Pay has recently made its way to the Canadian and Australian markets. The company’s next Apple Pay targets are the Asian markets of China, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Albeit small, Apple Pay will continue to contribute dollars to the company’s big pool of revenue.

Even with a slowdown in its hardware segment, Apple continues to be the most profitable company in the world. At the same time, it’s expanding through new avenues like mobile financial services, music, virtual reality, and automobiles. In the grand scheme of things, Apple is also effectively creating its own niche in the IoT industry.

Having weighed these prospects, Apple stock looks dirt cheap at its current levels. For prospective investors, now may be the best time to put AAPL stock on their investment radars.