When 21-year old Tom Pszeniczny decided to make his foray into investing, he figured Apple was a pretty safe bet.
In the days leading up to the iPhone 5 launch event last September, the Drexel University student bought six shares of the iPad and iPhone maker for $665 a piece.
While Pszeniczny wasn't looking to make a quick buck, the following week seemed promising. On the day the iPhone 5 went on sale, investors pushed Apple (AAPL) shares to a record high of $705.07, generating a 6% return for Pszeniczny.
But it was all downhill from there.
Apple's stock began to slide, and by January, shares were down more than 30% from their all-time high. Thinking the stock would pop after Apple reported its quarterly earnings, Pszeniczny decided to pick up 3 more shares at $503 a pop.
"I thought it had bottomed out," said the Cinnaminson, N.J., native. Even though Apple managed to report a record quarterly profit in late January, the company's lower margins worry analysts and investors, who pushed the stock down 14% in the two-day period following the earnings announcement.
With shares now trading around $390, Pszeniczny is down almost $2,000 on his initial investment.
In hindsight, Pszeniczny said he probably bought shares when they were "over-inflated." But he's not cashing out just yet. In fact, Pszeniczny said if shares decline to $350, he would consider purchasing more.
"It's disappointing to see how Wall Street has treated Apple, because I don't think its stock price is a true reflection of its strength," he said, noting that Apple is sitting on a hoard of cash, has no debt and is trading at a valuation of less than 10 times earnings estimates. "I still believe Apple is a solid company -- one of the best in the world."
As long as Apple continues to innovate, release new products, and keep its margins healthy, Pszeniczny believes the company's share price can recover.
"For now, I'm just going to have to wait and see what happens," he said.
Pszeniczny won't have long to wait. Apple reports its quarterly results after the market close Tuesday. On average, analysts expect earnings-per-share around $10, about 19% below last year's quarterly profit. Sales are expected to edge up about 9%.
It may be the beginning of the end for the Bitcoin bubble. The price of the virtual currency, which has increased almost 20-fold this year, plunged 60% Wednesday in the span of just five hours.
Bitcoin prices hit a high of $266 earlier in the day before dropping as low as $105 in choppy afternoon trading. It later bounced back to about $145, but that's still about 45% below the high.
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On paper, it was a really tough quarter for J.C. Penney (JCP), but CEO Ron Johnson was successful in convincing investors that the company is moving in the right direction.
The retailer, which launched an overhauled pricing strategy in February, lost $147 million during the second quarter, nearly three times more than analysts were expecting. Sales were extremely weak, falling 23% overall from a year earlier, and same store sales, a key gauge MOREHibah Yousuf - Aug 10, 2012 12:57 PM ET
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