What to Expect When Apple Reports

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Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) is set to report its fiscal fourth-quarter financial results after the markets close on Thursday. Out of all the FAANG stocks, Apple has actually performed the best despite a horrific October. While the S&P 500 dipped over 7% in October, Apple is down less than 5%, which is saying something considering the tech sector was down about 8.5%.

As per its guidance, Apple expects to see revenues in the range of $60 billion to $62 billion and gross margin of 38.0% to 38.5%. Consensus analyst estimates for the iPhone giant call for $61.57 billion in revenue and $2.78 in earnings per share (EPS). The same period for last year had $2.07 in EPS and $52.58 billion in revenue.

Given the recent collapse in the tech sector (think Facebook, Intel and Twitter), a miss by Apple could increase the carnage. Even a narrow beat might not be enough to lift investors’ outlook for the sector.

In Apple’s most recent quarter, the firm reported its product sales as follows:

  • iPhone moved 41.3 million units, up 1% year over year. The segment pulled in revenues of $29.91 billion, an increase of 20%.
  • iPad reported 11.6 million units sold, an increase of 1%. Revenues decreased 5% to $4.74 billion.
  • Mac sold 3.72 million units, a decrease of 13% from last year. Revenues decreased 4% to $5.33 billion.
  • Services revenues increased 31% to $9.55 billion.
  • Other Products revenues increased 37% to $3.74 billion.

Excluding Thursday’s move, Apple has outperformed the broad markets, with its stock up about 29% in the past 52-weeks. In just 2018 alone, the stock was up roughly the same amount.

A few analysts weighed in on Apple ahead of the report:

  • UBS has a Buy rating with a $250 price target.
  • Rosenblatt has a Buy rating and a $200 price target.
  • Nomura has a Neutral rating with a $215 price target.
  • Macquarie has a Buy rating with a $235 target price.
  • Wells Fargo has a Neutral rating with a $210 target.
  • Merrill Lynch has a Buy rating and a $235 price target.

Shares of Apple were last seen trading at $219.20, in a 52-week range of $150.24 to $233.47. The consensus analyst price target is $239.75.