Apple’s third-quarter revenue rose to $94 billion, according to its latest earnings report. Meanwhile, AAPL’s shares have fallen nearly 14% so far this year.
If those numbers have you drooling and wanting a piece of AAPL, you can buy Apple stock in six easy steps.
An online broker is your gateway to buying and selling stocks. Not only does an online brokerage account allow you to buy Apple stock, it also provides a wealth of research, educational materials and account types to help you achieve your investment goals.
If you’re investing for long-term goals, such as your child’s college education or retirement, you may want to buy AAPL in a tax-advantaged account such as an individual retirement account (IRA). If you’re saving for a home or building wealth, a taxable brokerage account is a better option.
Fees, services and investment options may vary from broker to broker, so compare multiple brokers to find the one that is right for you. If you’re not sure where to start, check out our picks for the best online brokers.
Even CEO Tim Cook doesn’t have unlimited cash to put into Apple. Ask yourself these four questions when deciding how much to invest in Apple.
Before buying stocks, take some time to consider your investment goals. Investing always involves some risk, and buying large numbers of individual stocks in a company can be especially risky.
Apple itself notes that it has experienced significant price volatility in the past and can be significantly affected by external factors. While past performance is not a guide for the future, you may experience similar fluctuations in the future. Price volatility should affect how you invest in Apple, advises Lawrence Sprung, CFP and wealth advisor at Mitlin Financial.
“I think Apple is a good investment for people with moderate or higher risk tolerance, volatility tolerance and long-term time horizon,” he said. “They’re a leader in their industry, which is often the case. A very good reason to make good long-term investments.”
While it’s exciting to buy shares in a company, especially a big-name company like Apple, you should take the time to do your due diligence.
Begin your assessment by reviewing the documents that public companies like Apple are required to file regularly: annual reports (Form 10-K) and quarterly reports (Form 10-Q). These reports contain detailed performance and financial information and are often referred to in the financial press as earnings reports or earnings reports.
You can find them on Apple’s Investor Relations website or by searching the SEC’s database. You can also turn to expert analytics for insights like you might find on Fidelity, Morningstar or Forbes. You can then use all the information gathered and expert reviews to determine if Apple looks like a financially sound company to invest your money in.
You can place a request on your brokerage platform to buy AAPL shares at the current best price, or use more advanced order types such as limit or stop orders to only buy shares when the share price falls below a certain threshold.
Since Apple trades on the Nasdaq exchange, it can be bought and sold between 9:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. EST Monday through Friday. However, Nasdaq has a pre-market and after-hours trade that you can access through your online brokerage.
Nasdaq pre-market trading hours are 4:00 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. and after-hours trading hours are 4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. By 8:00 PM ET. If you place an order outside of the hours that the broker allows you to trade, it will be processed as soon as trading resumes.
Regular review of your portfolio and its performance is recommended.
To assess the performance of Apple or any other stock, start by looking at annualized percentage returns. This gives you a number that you can compare to other investments when evaluating your investment’s performance. You may also want to revisit the fundamentals you’ve looked at before to see how they change over time.
You can compare this information to other stocks or benchmarks, such as the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite. By looking at these benchmarks, you can see how your investments are performing compared to a specific industry or the market as a whole.
You may not hold your AAPL stock forever. Ultimately, the time has come when you can cash in and hope to see a solid return on your investment.
To sell your Apple shares, go back to your online brokerage platform, enter the ticker symbol and the number of shares (or dollar value) you wish to sell, and select the sell order type. These usually have the same names and functions as the above job types.
Keep in mind that if your investments have appreciated in value, you may be required to pay taxes on your gains. These so-called capital gains taxes are determined based on your income level and the length of time you hold AAPL stock. If you’re concerned about how selling Apple stock might affect your taxes, don’t be afraid to speak with a tax professional, such as a B. Certified Public Accountant (CPA).
While individual stocks are one way to invest in Apple, they’re not your only options. You can also invest in index funds or exchange-traded funds (ETFs), which you can buy just like individual stocks through an online broker.
Because these mutual funds own hundreds or even thousands of different stocks, they are generally considered less risky than individual stocks, while still offering stable long-term returns.
“Index funds or ETFs are a low-cost way to gain exposure to Apple and other tech companies,” Sprung said. “This allows investors to mitigate some of the risk by being exposed to more than one security in the sector or significantly overweight.”
Additionally, Apple is a significant portion of many leading index funds (for example, about 6% in many S&P 500 index funds), which means that even if you diversify the rest of your holdings, you still have a strong exposure to AAPL.
This broader approach has paid off for investors over the past year. From Aug. 30, 2020, to Aug. 30, 2021, Apple itself rose about 18%, while the S&P 500 rose nearly 30% over the same period.