It is hard to discuss Research In Motion Ltd. without also referencing Apple Inc. After all, they both make wireless communications devices: the BlackBerry in the case of RIM, the iPhone in the case of Apple. And, just as noteworthy, their share prices have been heading in opposite directions over the past year: RIM has fallen 20 per cent while Apple has risen about 100 per cent.
This share-price divergence has left RIM's bullish analysts look increasing off-side. Among the 53 analyst who follow the stock, 35 still recommend it as a "buy." And the target prices among these bullish analysts range between $82 (U.S.) and $120. In other words, they seen gains of 37 per cent to 100 per cent over the next 12 months.
Mike Abramsky, an analyst at RBC Dominion Securities and the most bullish analyst following the stock, is sticking to his $120 target (the shares trade in New York, as well as Toronto) and expects RIM will top expectations when it reports its fiscal first quarter results on June 24.
The consensus expectation among analysts is for RIM to report earnings of $1.34 a share and revenue to $4.35-billion. Mr. Abramsky expects earnings of $1.37 a share and revenue of $4.4-billion.
If RIM succeeds in topping expectations, he believes that analysts will increase their estimates and start to factor in new product launches, such as an updated BlackBerry and a touchscreen smart phone.