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Apple hits technical snag Add to ...

It looks as though Apple Inc. has problems of its own, although they are the sort of problems that investors in Research In Motion Ltd. can only dream about. No, the world isn't losing its appetite for iPods, iPhones and iPads, but rather Apple's share price is starting to exhibit a little technical bearishness.

Some observers pointed out this week that the stock recently fell below its 200-day moving average - due largely to its 11.5 per cent slump since mid-February - after spending 551 days in a row above that technical level.

"When a stock is above its 200-day, it is thought to be in a long-term uptrend, and it is thought to be in a long-term downtrend when it is below its 200-day," said Bespoke Investment Group, on a blog post that noted Apple's technical dip.

In the case of Apple, the last time it fell below its 200-day moving average was in September, 2008. The stock then fell another 52 per cent before its fortunes began to turn.

Admittedly, the broader market was also spiralling downward back then, due to the financial crisis. Still, technical analyst Jim Stellakis of Technical Alpha believes that Apple is at risk of falling 14 per cent, to $280 (U.S.), should the stock close below $325 (U.S.), according to Bloomberg News. On Friday afternoon, the stock was down to $321-and-change.

"Investors' attitude towards the stock is change, in a negative way," he told Bloomberg.

That view certainly stands in contrast to most observations on the stock. According to Bloomberg, 48 analysts who follow the stock have a "buy" recommendation on it. No analysts have a "sell" recommendation and just four recommend it as a "hold."

For what it's worth, RIM fell below its 200-day moving average the day that it cut its fiscal first quarter earnings guidance at the end of April. It has fallen 50 per cent since then.

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