Apple Inc. Stock Tumbles On Disappointing Sales, Analysts Still Positive

Apple Inc. Stock Tumbles On Disappointing Sales, Analysts Still Positive

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) stock declined today after disappointing revenue and iPhone unit numbers—even though Wall Street should have been prepared for the disappointment. Analysts generally are saying that it’s time to move on and that there’s nothing to worry about because the company’s future is intact, although Apple did pick up a few price target cuts following last night’s results.

Apple’s earnings by the numbers

As of now, Apple shares are closing in on their 52-week low of $92, although that could prove to be a key support level for the stock. The company posted $75.87 billion in sales, coming up short of the $76.6 billion consensus and toward the low end of management’s guide for $75.5 billion to $77.5 billion. Earnings were $3.28 per share, which was ahead of consensus at $3.23.

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Gross margin improved from 39.9% last year to 40.1%, while iPhone units were 74.78 million, coming up short of the consensus at 75 million.

Time to move on

Drexel Hamilton analyst Brian White is one of Apple’s biggest bulls, and he’s urging investors to get over the December quarter results and move on. He doesn’t seem too worried about the March quarter as he prefers to focus on the iPhone 7 release, which is expected in September. The quarter could prove problematic again even though management’s guidance for the quarter disappointed as well, although White said it’s not surprising that the guide was soft.

If there’s anything to learn from today’s decline in Apple’s stock price though, it’s that even when the bar is set low, investors will still sell off shares. Management guided for revenue of $50 billion to $53 billion, missing the consensus at $55.4 billion. White estimates the implied earnings estimate at about $1.94 per share at the midpoint of the guide, which again comes up short of the consensus at $2.22.

The Drexel Hamilton analyst is currently evaluating his price target, which is interesting as he’s been stick with $200 for quite some time now.

Apple hit by macroeconomic conditions

Barclays analyst Mark Moskowitz cut his price target for Apple from $150 to $142 per share although he maintains his Overweight rating. He thinks the stock presents a good opportunity for long term investors in light of the short term weakness. Interestingly, he thinks last night’s earnings report and outlook wasn’t as bad as Wall Street was expecting and that what really might have concerned them could have been management’s commentary on the weakening global economy. He also emphasizes the iPhone 7 and future opportunities, like the possibility of “as-a-service” being added to the story.

William Blair analyst Anil Doradla also emphasized the problematic macro problems, noting that without the 800 basis points of currency exchange headwinds, Apple’s sales would have been $80.8 billion in revenue.

Baird analyst William Power also emphasized the macro conditions but also cut his price target, pushing it down from $150 to $130 per share. BMO Capital Markets analyst Tim Long trimmed his target from $133 to $130 per share but maintained his Outperform rating.

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Michelle Jones is editor-in-chief for and has been with the site since 2012. Previously, she was a television news producer for eight years. She produced the morning news programs for the NBC affiliates in Evansville, Indiana and Huntsville, Alabama and spent a short time at the CBS affiliate in Huntsville. She has experience as a writer and public relations expert for a wide variety of businesses. Email her at [email protected]
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