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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
January 23, 2013
12:53 EDTAAPLEarnings Preview: Apple down sharply since last report amid iPhone concerns
Apple (AAPL) is scheduled to report Q1 results after the market close on Wednesday, January 23, with a conference call scheduled for 5:00 pm ET. Despite a sharp pullback since its last earnings report, the iPhone and iPad maker remains by far the most valuable technology company in the world, as measured by market cap... EXPECTATIONS: Analysts are looking for EPS of $13.44 on revenue of $54.73B, according to First Call. The consensus range for EPS is $11.97-$15.50 on revenue of $52.01B-$59.55B. Along with last quarter's results, Apple forecast Q1 EPS about $11.75 and revenue about $52B, both of which were far short of consensus at the time. In a note to investors this morning, noted tech analyst Gene Munster at research firm Piper Jaffray summarized the "buy side" expectations for some of Apple's key metrics in Q1, including projections for 50M iPhones sold, 24M iPads sold and gross margin of 39%. According to Munster, the buy side expects Q1 EPS of $13.73 on revenue of $57B, both of which are above consensus... LAST QUARTER: Apple reported Q4 EPS of $8.67 against estimates for $8.75 on revenue of $36B against estimates for $35.8B. The company said it sold 26.9M iPhones, 14M iPads, 5.3M iPods and 4.9M Macs in Q4. Apple reported its gross margin in Q4 fell to 40.0% from 40.3% in the same quarter of the prior year. During its Q4 earnings call, Apple forecast a sequential decline in gross margin in Q1 driven by new form factor changes. The company also mentioned that it was working to get costs down on the iPad Mini and be more efficient in manufacturing. The day after the company's Q4 report, Apple shares fell $5.54, or 0.91%, to $604.00... RESEARCH AND NEWS: Within the last several weeks, first DigiTimes, then The Wall Street Journal, reported that Apple cut its component orders for the iPhone 5. Since Apple's Q4 report, its shares were downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Citigroup on December 17 and to Sector Perform from Outperform at Pacific Crest on January 16. Numerous other research firms have cut their price targets on shares during the last three months, including JPMorgan, Merrill Lynch, Stifel Nicolaus, Scotia Capital and UBS. On the more positive side, Piper's Munster recently raised his forecast for Q1 iPhone sales to 50M from 45M and his margin estimate by 100 bps, noting commentary from AT&T (T) and Verizon (VZ) that indicated solid demand for the higher margin phone. Munster said Apple may guide toward Q2 revenue around $41B, which would be nearly 13% below the Street consensus, but noted that Apple has guided revenue 6%-13% below the Street over the last three quarters. Munster also said Apple's guidance tonight may shed light on the recent reports of component order cuts and that Apple shares have been down less as a function of valuation and more related to the lack of a product catalyst, such as a lower-tier iPhone or Apple TV. Piper Jaffray maintains an Overweight rating and $875 price target on Apple. Jefferies analyst Peter Misek also stated in a note to investors about a week ago that the firm is comfortable with its above Street estimate for 53M iPhones sold in the quarter. Jefferies' estimates for EPS and revenue were also well above consensus and the firm kept a Buy rating and $800 price target on the shares... PRICE ACTION: Since the day after last quarter's report, shares of Apple have declined over 16%. During the last week Apple shares have spent brief stretches below the psychologically and technically important $500 level, but in early afternoon trading ahead of tonight's report, Apple is up over 1% to ~$510.
News For AAPL From The Last 14 Days
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August 14, 2014
17:00 EDTAAPLGreenlight Capital gives quarterly update on stakes
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16:01 EDTAAPLOptions Update; August 14, 2014
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14:13 EDTAAPLOmega Advisors gives quarterly update on stakes
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09:36 EDTAAPLActive equity options trading on open
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07:55 EDTAAPLApple bans two chemicals from iPhone, iPad final stages, AP says
Apple said its investigation at 22 factories found no evidence that two potentially hazardous chemicals, benzene and n-hexane, endangered the plants' workers, but the company is banning the use of those chemicals in the final assembly of iPhones and iPads, reported Associated Press, citing statements from the company. Apple is still allowing use of the two chemicals during the early production phases, but is lowering the maximum amount of benzene and n-hexane that can be present in the materials used during those phases. Reference Link
06:19 EDTAAPLLenovo sees opportunities outside of China for smartphone business, WSJ reports
Lenovo CEO Yang Yuanqing tells the Wall Street Journal that although that China is still the most important market for its smartphone business, the company sees additional opportunities outside China. Reference Link
August 13, 2014
16:00 EDTAAPLOptions Update; August 13, 2014
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11:41 EDTAAPLAmazon payment move complements e-commerce platform, says RW Baird
Baird said Amazon's (AMZN) launch of the "Local Register" payment and card reader system is not a surprise after the company's acquisition of assets from GoPago and that the move is complementary to Amazon's e-commerce platform. Baird said Amazon's system will compete with Square and eBay's (EBAY) payment product "Here" and added that it expects Google (GOOG) and Apple (AAPL) to expand their existing payment initiatives. The firm maintains its Outperform rating and $400 price target on Amazon.com.
09:37 EDTAAPLActive equity options trading on open
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07:19 EDTAAPLSiri creators working on new advanced AI system, Wired reports
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August 12, 2014
16:00 EDTAAPLOptions Update; August 12, 2014
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures down 20c to 31.65. Option volume leaders: AAPL MNKD TWTR TSLA KMI KATE MGM NFLX KO according to Track Data.
09:35 EDTAAPLActive equity options trading on open
Active equity options trading on open according to Track Data: AAPL GOOG C TSL EXAS BAC DNDN JNJ TSLA
06:24 EDTAAPLApple readies Healthkit launch despite complicated regulations, Reuters says
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06:19 EDTAAPLApple suppliers begin production of next-generation iPads, Bloomberg says
Apple suppliers began production of next-generation iPads as the tech firm looks to reignite the popularity of tablet computers after it experienced two consecutive quarters of sales declines, according to Bloomberg, citing people with knowledge of the matter. Reference Link
05:47 EDTAAPLApple December quarter margins likely down sequentially, says Piper Jaffray
Piper Jaffray says itís likely that Apple's December quarter margins decline quarter-over-quarter due to the impact of the updated iPhone 6. Piper does not view the potential margin decline as a long-term negative, however, noting that Apple showed with the iPhone 5S that margins can expand as the company moves away from new design launches. Piper says it remains a buyer of Apple shares with an Overweight rating and $105 price target.
August 11, 2014
16:00 EDTAAPLOptions Update; August 11, 2014
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures down 1.33 to 31.90. Option volume leaders: AAPL KMI MNKD PBR AMZN SCTY TWTR TSLA according to Track Data.
10:07 EDTAAPLVirnetX says court denies Apple motion in patent suit
VirnetX (VHC) announced that on August 8 the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Tyler Division, issued its patent claim construction, or "Markman" Order and ruled on a VirnetX motion in the ongoing patent infringement action between VirnetX and Apple (AAPL). Both parties had presented arguments on the disputed terms along with various other motions at a Markman hearing on May 20. In the Markman order, the court denied Apple's Motion for Summary Judgment of Indefiniteness, in which Apple alleged that some of the disputed claims terms in the patents asserted by VirnetX were invalid for indefiniteness. In a separate order, the court granted in part and denied in part VirnetX's Motion for Partial Summary Judgment on Apple's Invalidity Counterclaims. The court's order precludes Apple from asserting invalidity as a defense against infringement of the claims that were tried before a jury in VirnetX's prior litigation against Apple. Apple is not precluded from asserting invalidity as a defense against infringement of the claims that were not tried before a jury in the Apple I case. "We are extremely pleased with the court's rulings and we remain confident in the merits of our complaint against Apple," said Kendall Larsen, VirnetX CEO and President. "We believe the court's Markman Order and motion ruling represents another significant step towards the successful resolution of this litigation."
09:36 EDTAAPLActive equity options trading on open
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06:23 EDTAAPLGoogle testing "Listen Now" music ads, WSJ reports
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August 10, 2014
16:51 EDTAAPLCourt rejects $324M settlement in tech hiring conspiracy, NYT says
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