A bite of the AAPL

About two years ago, I took a dive into the Apple stock pool – with no idea what I was doing. It didn’t take long to learn how over my head I was, but I’ve stuck with it and it’s finally starting to pay off.

My original idea was to invest in a company I care about just when it was about to really break open. The previous year, Apple announced the first-ever iPhone, and I had a good feeling that after Macworld an investment in AAPL stock was a decent idea. What’s the worst that could happen?

AAPL entry point

Then the worst happened, and for two long years I’ve agonized over the stock market like never before.

But now AAPL is cruising at its highest selling price ever, thanks to stellar quarterly numbers, and I could knock out my goal in the next few weeks.

The goal? To make enough off the AAPL stock I own to keep one share and sell off the rest and still make a profit.

In January 2008, I bought AAPL at $189 – just a smidgen under it’s then-high of $200 or so. I bought five shares, meaning I paid $945.

Now, to keep one (currently at $250 or so) and still make money, I need to sell off the remaining four so that I get back something north of $945. If I were to sell four shares today, I would earn more than $1,000. That’s a $55 profit, and I still get to keep a share of AAPL stock.

See how that works?

Why keep one measly share? To have a sense of ownership in a company I respect. It’s not about the money (although it’s fun to make some). It’s about investing in my favorite West Coast computer maker – a vote of confidence.

And confidence is the word lately. AAPL has been on a tear, especially considering the low point it was at a year ago:

AAPL stock low

The little burgeoning investor voice in my told me to buy, and buy a lot, because it can only go up. But my experience after the January 2008 crash spooked me a bit, so I left well enough alone. Now, it’s paying off.

My last step is to set a limit price at $290, meaning if the stock hits that number I sell four shares automatically. Also, I’ve set a loss price at $250, meaning if it hits that mark my four shares are sold automatically, too. It’s a sweet spot, that range in between. I don’t want to get greedy, but I also want to ensure I make enough to keep that one share, plus some extra dough on the side.

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