Apple may have beaten Wall Street’s revenue and profit expectations with its latest quarterly earnings on Monday, but the market’s skittishness about the durability of its profit margins was much in evidence. Earnings guidance, on the face of it, seemed to point to steady margin erosion in the coming months. But Apple was able to silence the doubters – for this quarter, at least.
Read on for details of the earnings and our coverage of the earnings call as it happened.
It is three months since Apple announced a whopping $100bn return of cash to investors, topping up its existing $45bn dividend plans with what it billed as the biggest share buyback scheme in American corporate history.
In the weeks that followed that announcement, Apple’s shares soared, finally emerging from the months-long funk that saw them dip below $400. But that rally went into reverse as soon as Apple paid its next dividend on May 9. Read more
Apple lost its crown as the world’s most valuable company this week after its quarterly profits disappointed Wall Street. However, worries of slow growth didn’t discourage some tech observers from rooting for Silicon Valley’s star tech power to bounce back.
Farhad Manjoo at Slate called suggestions that Apple was somehow losing its allure with consumers “totally bogus”. The only thing that held it back, he added, was an inability to keep up with customer demand: “Limited supply, unlike limited demand, is something Apple can fix. In the grand scheme of things, it’s not such a terrible problem.” Read more
After two quarters of declines, iPhone sales ticked up again in the latest period, to nearly 27m. Meanwhile, iPad sales dropped to 14m as rumours of a new iPad mini spread like wildfire. But for Wall Street, this was just the appetiser: the real banquet will be Apple’s current quarter, when iPhone sales are projected to jump to 50m and iPads to 22m. Speaking on the earnings call, Apple executives sounded optimistic about their ability to ship the new products in high volumes – though they warned that profit margins would suffer a temporary dent.
See below for our blow-by-blow take on the company’s latest earnings call. Read more
Interesting commentary from around the Web on the tech story that made headlines this week.
Even though Apple’s earnings disappointed Wall Street this week, attention quickly shifted to the forthcoming iPhone 5 and the latest version of its Mac operating system, Mountain Lion. Read more
Apple has done it again. For a brief moment last week, following the announcement that it beat quarterly forecasts with record numbers, the Silicon Valley company once again became the world’s most valuable company.
This time, though, things were different, with Tim Cook, who took over as Apple’s chief executive from co-founder Steve Jobs, now at the helm. Read more
Hewlett-Packard moved up its quarterly earnings release to before the US markets open Tuesday, two trading sessions earlier than planned, after a memo from its chief executive warned of tough conditions. Read more