Retail traders are rushing into Apple as they seek shelter after Powell’s ‘pain’ warning

Retail investors are loading up on Apple shares even after Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell’s warning of continued rate hikes and further pain ahead for the economy. Since the latest market sell-off kicked into gear in mid-August, retail investors have shied away from their more usual buy-the-dip mentality in favor of a more cautious strategy, recent data from VandaTrack suggests. Numbers from Friday last week showed investors who were hesitant to buy intraday dips after Powell’s Jackson Hole speech, with most inflows occurring during the tail end of the trading session. “Retail investors’ risk-aversion is in line with retracements seen in late April and June of this year, ” analysts from VandaTrack said in a note Wednesday. “If the S & P 500 continues to fall sharply, we expect retail investors to decrease their equity purchases further, as happened in late April.” Despite this concerning backdrop, investors seem to be seeking shelter in Apple, with the iPhone maker seeing more than $340 million in net retail purchases over a five-day trading period that included Aug. 26. The iPhone maker’s stock has held up better than some of its big technology peers as investors veered away from growth areas in search of safety this year. Apple’s shares have tumbled about 13.6% this year, through Wednesday’s close, less than the S & P 500’s 17.6% decline or Microsoft’s 21.9% loss. Some analysts seem to believe further upside is in store for the technology giant despite a murky economic outlook. Earlier this month, KeyBanc raised its price target on Apple , citing growing iPhone demand. Credit Suisse, meanwhile, upped the stock to an outperform rating in August, naming it a top pick in the tech hardware space. According to VandaTrack, net retail purchases for Tesla followed behind Apple with over $313 million, although inflows have slowed since the electric vehicle maker’s stock split.

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