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Apple Meets The Street On Earnings, Drop In Value Of Holdings Push Company To Loss

Q4 Recap - Apple Meets The Street On Earnings, Drop In Value Of Holdings Push Company To Loss

by , 11:00 AM EDT, October 17th, 2002

After Wednesday's market close Apple Computer reported quarterly earnings from operations of US$.02 per share, inline with market expectations. One-time charges totaling just over US$50 million pushed Apple into the red for the quarter. Including one time charges, mostly relating to the write-downs in the value of the company's holding in Akamai and Earthlink, Apple lost US$.13 per share, on revenue of US$1.44 billion. Revenue was essentially flat from the year-earlier period.

During the quarter Apple shipped 734,000 Macintosh computers, down fourteen percent from last year's shipment levels. Gross margins (the difference between Apple's selling price and the cost of manufacture) fell to 26.4 percent from 30.1 percent.

Fred Anderson, Apple's CFO, has chosen to be conservative in the company's estimates for the December quarter (Apple's first fiscal quarter of 2003). His guidance to analysts is that Apple will see a modest increase in revenue and earnings from the September quarter for the current three-month period.

For the fiscal year Apple reported a net profit of US$ 65 million on revenue of US$5.74 billion. Mr. Anderson referenced the difficult times in the PC business as one reason for conservative estimates. Apple plans to open several more retail stores by the Thanksgiving holiday but the company remains cautious about the prospects for strong holiday sales. In a prepared statement released to the press, Apple CEO Steve Jobs states that the company does not see a pick up in sales for the PC industry anytime soon.

This week IBM and Intel also reported mixed results for the third calendar quarter and most analysts will view Apple's results as symptomatic of the difficult times faced by most large companies in the technology sector of the economy.

For other stories regarding Apple's stock activity, visit our updated Apple Stock Watch Special Report.

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