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Apple Earnings Don't Meet Expectations

For the first time since 2004, Apple this week reported quarterly earnings that failed to meet analysts’ expectations. Attributed largely to weaker iPhone sales, the news has analysts and reporters mulling its implications for Apple and the industry at large.      

"Investors are going to start to speculate that there is change under way now that Jobs is gone, and that there's trouble ahead,” Channing Smith, co-manager at Capital Advisors Growth Fund, tells Reuters. “We don't share that point.”

In a roundup of analyst notes by CNNMoney, Needham’s Charlie Wolf was the most representative. "The slowdown in iPhone sales in the second half of the September quarter in advance of the launch of iPhone 4S appeared to take some analysts by surprise,” Wolf wrotes. “However, shipments of 17.073 million iPhones were virtually in line with our 17 million estimate." 

“We view this as just a bump in the road,” writes Business Insider Research. “Was this a case of Wall Street expectations getting out ahead of reality?” asks CBS News. “If so, their irrational exuberance is partly due to being schooled to expect more out of Apple.”

“Most of the disappointment came because of weaker than expected iPhone 4 sales,” added BI Research. “On the conference call, Apple blamed the poor sales on rumors of a new iPhone. This is a poor excuse--there are crazy rumors around Apple products all the time, and they still outperform.”

“Nonetheless, Apple handily topped its own forecast, which called for earnings of $5.50 a share on revenue of $25 billion,” reports CNet, adding that “the company posted a gross profit margin of 40.3 percent, up 3.4 percent from the same quarter last year.”

Still, “Apple may have just had its second-best fiscal quarter of all-time, but that wasn’t enough to satisfy the high expectations of Wall Street analysts,” writes Digital Trends.

Meanwhile, “Apple's huge sum of cash and investments continues to grow, reaching $81 billion during the company's fourth quarter of fiscal 2011,” AppleInsider points out. What was Facebook’s latest valuation?


1 comment about "Apple Earnings Don't Meet Expectations".
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  1. Douglas Ferguson from College of Charleston, October 19, 2011 at 4:02 p.m.

    I hope this doesn't interfere with the beatification of Steve Jobs.

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