Apple's profits to be highest ever for public company, analyst says

The irrepressible Brian White (Apple to hit $1,111 a share!) also says investors should think of Apple's market cap potential in terms of trillions, not billions.

Jon Skillings Editorial director
A born browser of dictionaries and a lifelong New Englander, Jon Skillings is an editorial director at CNET. He honed his language skills as a US Army linguist (Polish and German) before diving into editing for tech publications -- including at PC Week and the IDG News Service -- back when the web was just getting under way, and even a little before. For CNET, he's written on topics from GPS to 5G, James Bond, lasers, brass instruments and music streaming services.
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Jon Skillings
2 min read
Not the iPhone 5. But the iPhone 4 has been no slouch. Apple

Analyst Brian White remains ever bullish on Apple.

White, you may recall, is the Topeka Capital Markets analyst who in April boldly declared that Apple's stock would eventually be worth $1,001 a share. A few weeks later, he pushed that up to the singular price target of $1,111 "over the next year." That would amount to Apple's stock roughly doubling in value.

This morning, the supremely optimistic Mr. White has focused in on Apple's profits, in a tabulation relayed by Boy Genius Report. In a note to clients, White writes that, as he reckons it, Apple is on pace in calendar 2012 "to generate the highest annual net income of any publicly traded company ever." Ever!

Last month, Apple turned up in third place on Fortune's list of most profitable companies, just behind Chevron and several lengths in back of Exxon Mobile.

Barron's draws out another dramatic declamation from White: "Investors," he said, "should think of Apple's market cap potential in terms of trillions, not billions."

What's driving the current round of enthusiasm? White -- like many observers -- is fired up about the possibility of Apple unleashing the long-awaited iPhone 5 and a hotly anticipated iPad Mini. The Topeka Capital Markets analyst is apparently basing his gung-ho go-to-market expectations for an "exciting September" for Apple on discussions he's had with "local contacts" in Apple's supply chain in Taipei.

Apple is also coming off a heck of a week in which it played emcee to a bevy of product announcements at its Worldwide Developers Conference, most notably iOS 6, a MacBook Pro with Retina display, and an upgraded Siri.

Shares in the maker of Macs, iPads, and iPhones have traded as high as $644 apiece in recent months. This morning, they're up slightly to just over $581 a share.

We've reached out to Apple for comment on White's predictions and will update this story when we hear back.