NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Apple (AAPL) - Get Report stock is plunging roughly 5% today after the company forecast for its first revenue decline in 13 years following the slowest ever quarterly increase in iPhone sales.
Since the iPhone maker reported its first quarter financial results after yesterday's market close, analysts have struggled to value a stock that is missing iPhone projections and might be on a "patent cliff" but nonetheless has an "incredible balance sheet," TheStreet's Jim Cramer said on CNBC's Squawk on the Street this morning.
Analysts should not compare Apple to rival technology stocks or to FANG stocks - an acronym created by Cramer for high-performing stocks Facebook (FB), Amazon.com (AMZN), Netflix (NFLX) and Google's (GOOGL) Alphabet. Rather, Apple should be compared with biopharmaceutical company Pfizer (PFE), Cramer contended.
"The Apple situation is so novel that traditional tech analysts are done," Cramer stated, adding that no company within the technology industry has experienced growth like Apple's and subsequently plateaued.
Pfizer, however, has a "fabulous" balance sheet and a good dividend, but faced a patent cliff when sales of its Lipitordrug peaked. Lipitor for Pfizer was the "nice disaster" that the iPhone is for Apple, Cramer pointed out.
Based on Pfizer's multiple, even if Apple does not develop another revenue stream, Apple shares should go to $100, he said. If Apple does develop another revenue stream, the stock could reach $130.
Cramer has confidence in Apple's ability to develop a revenue stream beyond iPhones, and has continually urged Apple CEO Tim Cook to focus on integrating the company's products in the car.
"I think when you get a chance to have a multiple that's as low as they are, it requires the power of magical thinking," Cramer noted after co-anchor David Faber argued that Apple historically has not made major acquisitions.
Separately, TheStreet Ratings team rates the stock as a "buy" with a ratings score of B.
Apple's strengths such as its impressive record of earnings per share growth, compelling growth in net income, robust revenue growth, notable return on equity and expanding profit margins outweigh the fact that the company has had lackluster performance in the stock itself.
You can view the full analysis from the report here: AAPL
TheStreet Ratings objectively rated this stock according to its "risk-adjusted" total return prospect over a 12-month investment horizon. Not based on the news in any given day, the rating may differ from Jim Cramer's view or that of this article's author.