SEATTLE (CBS Seattle/AP) — The iPhone 5 could be coming sooner rather than later.

According to a report on the Japanese website Macotakara, a Foxconn recruiter said in an interview that they are hiring 18,000 new workers to help launch Apple’s newest iPhone in June.

Foxconn — the Chinese company that assembles the Apple iPhone and iPad — recently came under fire after a rash of suicides by its workers in 2010 due to lack of wages and working conditions. Foxconn has agreed to raise its employees’ salaries after a labor auditor hired by Apple inspected the factories.

The iPhone news comes after a Wall Street analyst valued Apple shares at $1,001 each, or 63 percent more than their current price.

Topeka Capital Markets analyst Brian White says the Cupertino, Calif., company’s current stock price does not reflect its rapid growth in the last years, nor its future growth prospects.

He’s basing his price target on his estimate for Apple’s calendar-year 2013 earnings, multiplied by 17. He notes that Apple shares carried a multiple in the mid-20s from 2006 to 2010.

Wall Street analysts called the company undervalued for much of last year, but the stock has risen to match some earlier estimates. It’s up 79 percent over the past 12 months.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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