NEW YORK, April 20 (Xinhua) -- Most U.S. equities reported muted weekly performances, but Qualcomm stock was an exception.
Shares of the U.S. mobile chipmaker notched a 4-day winning streak in the trading week shortened by Good Friday, bringing week-to-date gains to 40.28 percent, triggered by the continued optimism on Apple-Qualcomm deal.
Apple and Qualcomm announced Tuesday that they have reached a settlement agreement, which will end litigation between the two tech giants over patent and royalty disputes.
The settlement includes an unspecified payment from Apple to Qualcomm.
The two companies also have reached a six-year license agreement, effective as of April 1, 2019, including a two-year option to extend, and a multi-year chipset supply agreement.
Qualcomm shares skyrocketed 23.21 percent shortly after the news, its biggest one-day gain in nearly two decades. The stock continued to jump 12.25 percent on Wednesday, before climbing another 1.02 percent on Thursday.
Over the past two years, Apple and Qualcomm have sued one another in courts, each asking for billions in damages.
According to media reports, Apple previously accused Qualcomm of engaging in illegal patent licensing practices, and was seeking up to 27 billion dollars in damages.
Qualcomm, for its part, argued Apple and its business partners had stopped paying royalties and was seeking up to 15 billion dollars in damages.
Analysts had previously said that the dispute between Qualcomm and Apple could slow down Apple's plans to support next-generation 5G networks. Qualcomm is one of the top suppliers of chips that can connect to 5G networks.
The agreement opens up the possibility that Apple could release a 5G iPhone sooner than expected with Qualcomm's modems, analysts said.
New iPhone models released in 2018 used Intel modem chips instead of Qualcomm's technology. On Tuesday, Intel announced its decision to withdraw from 5G smartphone modem business following the Apple-Qualcomm settlement.
Wall Street analysts believed the settlement would help Qualcomm strengthen its position in 5G network and expand revenue accordingly.
A number of brokerages upgraded their ratings of Qualcomm stock and raised their price targets.
JPMorgan analyst Samik Chatterjee upgraded Qualcomm to "overweight" from "neutral" with a price target of 88 dollars as 5G technology leadership will be appealing to investors, especially in the absence of litigation overhang.
Stifel's Kevin Cassidy set a 100-dollar price target based on his confidence in Qualcomm as the "clear leader" in 5G modem technology.
Closing the week at 79.89 U.S. dollars per share, Qualcomm has exceeded 96 billion dollars in market cap, increasing about 27 billion dollars after the settlement was announced.
The company is scheduled to report its latest quarterly earnings on May 1 and more details of Apple-Qualcomm deal might become available in the earnings call on the same day, according to Qualcomm.