Investors used to paying big for Apple are now finding the company at surprisingly reasonable multiples.

In the video below, technology analyst Eric Bleeker looks at valuing Apple using an enterprise-value-to-free-cash-flow ratio. While that might sound complex, it's basically a way to separate out a company's cash from its value, and then divide that by the amount of cash its business has generated across the past year. The lower the multiple, the "cheaper" a company is. Using this ratio, we find just how cheap Apple has become compared to some of its big tech peers.

CompanyEV/FCF
Apple 6.3
Microsoft 6.3
Google 15.1
Qualcomm 18.0

Source: S&P Capital IQ.


Eric discusses whether investors are underestimating the "stickiness" of Apple's platform at these prices and compares the company's valuation relative to other smartphone plays. In the end, he says whether or not you believe Apple is now cheap comes down to your feeling on whether it's a software company with highly locked-in users, or a hardware company facing a decline from peak margins and uncertain future growth. To see his full thoughts, watch the video below.

There's no doubt that Apple is at the center of technology's largest revolution ever, and that longtime shareholders have been handsomely rewarded with over 1,000% gains. However, there is a debate raging as to whether Apple remains a buy. The Motley Fool's senior technology analyst and managing bureau chief, Eric Bleeker, is prepared to fill you in on both reasons to buy and reasons to sell Apple, and what opportunities are left for the company (and more importantly, your portfolio) going forward. To get instant access to his latest thinking on Apple, simply click here now.

The article Is Apple the Best Buy in Tech? originally appeared on Fool.com.

Eric Bleeker, CFA, has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Apple and Google. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple, Google, Microsoft, and Qualcomm. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Copyright © 1995 - 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.


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