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What Is Apple Once the Romance Cools?

Stocks in this article: AAPL QQQ MSFT

Are you sure? What about when compared to the S&P 500 during the entire post-Jobs era?

Or how about the fact that despite revenues being higher, their quarterly revenue growth has been shrinking somewhat dramatically for the past two years.

My point isn't that Apple is no good. My point isn't that Tim Cook is no good. My point isn't even that I don't want to own the stock. My point is that Steve Jobs was special, and spectacular, and he brought a premium to shareholders that lasted a full year after his death. That premium was due to his one-of-a-kind ability to understand not just what people want today, but what they will want tomorrow. Jobs wasn't just Apple's vision, he was also their best salesman. He made both Apple's products and stock something you just wanted to own. It was fun, and even romantic.

But perhaps the romance is over. Perhaps it's time to finally take Apple for what it's worth -- about $520 per share -- and not continue expecting the impossible. Perhaps it's time, in a sense, to move on.

Maybe there is something else in your portfolio presenting the same psychological challenge. Are you holding on to something that is no longer serving you? Maybe it's a stock you have owned "forever" and have "grown to love." Maybe it's an annuity somebody sold you back in 1998 and you just don't want to admit you never should have bought it in the first place. Maybe you are holding onto the idea that a 60/40 allocation (60% stocks, 40% bonds) should get you safely to the promised land.

My guess is that this concept applies to all of us on some level. The psychology of investing can't be accurately or dependably quantified. But just because you can't measure it doesn't mean it's not there, and it certainly doesn't mean it's not important.

-- Written by Adam B. Scott, founder of Argyle Capital Partners, in Los Angeles.

At the time of publication the author was long QQQ.

This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.

Adam B. Scott is a founder of Argyle Capital Partners, a fee-only Registered Investment Advisor based in Los Angeles. A veteran of Morgan Stanley and UBS Wealth Management in Beverly Hills, Calif., Adam uses his extensive market knowledge and macro-level analysis to implement customized solutions for high net worth private clients. Adam is an avid tennis player and skier, and volunteers his free time to the Fulfillment Fund, the Tufts Alumni Association and coaching local youth sports.
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