So that means that while individual stockholders were selling over the past 4 years of gains, hedge funds have held and bought more, leaving them the only ones who still believe in the long term for Apple.
I suggest a reverse split of 10:1 to get the stock price up high enough so Apple is no longer held by the fickle individual shareholders who just are there trying to make a quick buck.
Gee, when you forget about who you are being told to hate, it sure is easy to see an argument FOR institutional owners, isn't there? Or did you think they came to hold 70% of outstanding shares in some way other than buying, buying, and buying while others were selling?
Well, these guys are like everyone else—they want profits on their investments. A problem the way these, and other investment houses work, is that they almost always have limits to the percentage of ownership in any investment vehicle. So if they are limited to having any one stock to no more than 8% of their investment, by their charter, then what happens when they reach that limit? If Apple is over 70% owned by institutions with these limits, what happens when most, or all, are fully vested in Apple stock?
One thing that happens is that the frenzied buying slows down dramatically. Then the stock price begins to waver. What happens when there is fear that large investment profits may be taxed at a higher level because of the "fiscal cliff"? We get a big sell off. What happens to the stock price, well, it tumbles. What happens when large corporate options traders have strike off prices that might not be met? I'm generalizing terribly here. They buy or sell off very large amounts of stock (which they are allowed to do) so that the stock price comes to where they need it to be to make those large profits, and not end up with losses. Is that manipulation? Sure, though some refuse to call it that because there isn't a coordinated effort, just the fact that many professional traders have the same ideas at the same time (surprise!). We had that on the 18th of this month last Friday. So we were being told that Friday would possibly be the last great opportunity to buy Apple stock at a bargain price.
I believe that many professional traders aren't really concerned about the long term future of a company at all. They are just looking at more immediate results for themselves. If that results in large movements of stock, they don't really care. After all, you can make large amounts of money whether a stock is going up or down.