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I'll play Devil's Advocate on AAPL, although i'm not an expert on the company. So please take everything I say with a grain of salt.

Apple's(and other other company for that matter) future success as a long-term investment will be determined primarily by the change in long-term earnings per share vs what it is today.

So even if massive buy backs can reduce AAPL's share count by, say 25% over the next 5-10 years, you still need net income to NOT drop meaningfully over that time for Apple's EPS to be meaningfully higher in 5-10 years.

Also consider that $50 billion (TTM net income per Morningstar) is almost double the net income of ANY public company in the U.S., any most of that profit is coming from one single product, the iPhone. It's pretty much unprecedented success. That's 50 billion eggs, with most of them in one very valuable basket.

Before investing in AAPL, I think you have to ask yourself an honest question, are you REALLY sure that Apple can keep earning $50 billion or more annually? Is the moat around their ecosystem REALLY that wide?

How likely is it that iPhone profits eventually decline, and new products aren't popular or profitable enough to fill the HUGE vacuum left from any potential iPhone decline.

What if *gasp* Apple's net income drops to a mere $25 billion by 2025, still higher than virtually ever other company in existence? What happens to EPS then?

No company dominates forever, and I think Apple has a dangerously high likelihood of a meaningful net income drop over the next decade. If that happens, EPS will probably drop DESPITE hypothetically huge buy backs taking place.

Yes, the P/E is cheap, but the "E" part of that equation, earnings, has a very high uncertainty, in my view.

If AAPL's EPS in 10 years isn't meaningfully higher than it is today, it's doubtful the stock will be meaningfully higher than it is today either.

I do not think this is the kind of business, like a BNSF or a Wells Fargo, where one confidently say that earnings are extremely likely to be meaningfully higher in 10+ years.
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