m3n4.net
m3n4.net November 19, 2018


Apple announces slow iPhone sales, but $100 billion for investors

03 May 2018, 10:05 | Brenda Erickson

Apple iPhone 8

Apple iPhone 8

Recent news reports suggested there had been weak demand for the pricey handset, but the company said this was the first cycle that its top-of-the-line had also been its most popular, outselling the iPhone 8, 7, 6S, and SE.

"Given our confidence in Apple's future, we are very happy to announce that our Board has approved a new $100 billion share repurchase authorization and a 16 percent increase in our quarterly dividend", said Luca Maestri, Apple's CFO.

iPhone sales in the three months to March totalled 52.2 million.

In a statement with the earnings report Tuesday, Apple CEO Tim Cook said "customers chose iPhone X more than any other iPhone each week in the March quarter". The iPhone sales also rose by 3% compared with the same time a year ago. Apple also predicted revenue of $51.5 billion to $53.5 billion in the June quarter, ahead of the $51.6 billion Wall Street expected, and the share repurchases in the March quarter drove Apple's cash net of debt down slightly to $145 billion. While that's not quite as high as last quarter's $796 ASP, it far exceeds last year's $654 and is a strong sign that iPhone X sales aren't almost as dismal as analysts expected.

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Shares rose 3.2 per cent to $174.49 in after-hours trading.

Apple does not offer sales figure from Apple Watch, AirPods and other peripherals but it did confirm revenues from other products were up 38 percent from a year ago.

Before the earnings release, evidence were mounting that Apple could be slowing down iPhone X production in light of weakening sales in China, its largest overseas market.

Still, Cook seemed optimistic, saying on the firm's earnings call: "HomePod is widely recognized for having the best sound quality for its size and class". Individually, the App Store, Apple Music, iCloud, and Apple Play all achieved record revenues.

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"And so we are working toward those things". Apple's quarterly sales in the Greater China market rose by 21 percent to $13 billion, the third quarter of growth after six quarters of double-digit declines.

Lawmakers have been hoping Apple and other companies would use the overseas cash to create more jobs in the U.S. and spend more on other projects that will help accelerate economic growth.

The three months ending with March were Apple's first full quarter selling its new flagship phone, the iPhone X. Analysts had pointed to signs, including the financial results of Apple's suppliers, that the device and its sister iPhone 8 and 8 Plus had not revitalized Apple's iPhone business as the company had hoped. Apple already has been raising its dividend and spending on buybacks every year since 2012; it's not known how much of the new increase would have happened regardless of the tax break. "With the greater flexibility we now have from access to our global cash, we can more efficiently invest in our USA operations and work toward a more optimal capital structure", said Luca Maestri, Apple's CFO.

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