Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s earnings report last night was far better than expected, and even the company’s June quarter guidance wasn’t as bad as some were expecting. As a result, analyst Brian White of Cantor Fitzgerald has raised his estimates in his report dated April 24, 2014.
Apple delivers upside
The company posted $45.646 billion in sales for the March quarter, which was ahead of White’s estimate of $43.24 billion. Pro forma earnings per share was $11.62, well ahead his $10.29 a share projection. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) also reported a gross margin of 39.3%, which again was ahead of his estimate of 38%. Operating margin was also ahead at 29.8%, compared to White’s 28%. Operating profits also beat, coming in at $13.59 billion, compared to White’s estimate of $12.1 billion.
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Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) also did a seven for one stock split last night, expanding its cash distribution to $130 billion by the end of next year. The company raised its share repurchase program to $90 billion from $60 billion and bumped up its quarterly dividend by 8%.
Apple’s year of innovation?
White continues to believe that this will be the “year of innovation” for Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). He thinks the company will deliver a crushing blow to iPhone naysayers, pointing to the company’s surprise in iPhone sales. The company reported 43.72 million units shipped in the March quarter, which was significantly ahead of his estimate of 36 million. He thinks that major beat will shut down all those who had been saying that Apple would come up far short on iPhone sales. He did note, however, that iPad units missed his estimate, coming in at 16.35 million, compared to his estimate of 18 million.
The analyst also said Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s June quarter guidance could have been worse than it was, so he increased his estimates. The company guided for sales of between $36 billion and $38 billion. He increased his revenue estimate to $37.8 billion, compared to Wall Street estimates of $38 billion. He also increased his earnings per share projection from $8.02 to $8.35 per share. Consensus estimates suggest earnings of $8.47 per share for the June quarter.
For the full 2014 fiscal year, White increased his earnings per share estimate from $41.17 to $43.12 per share.