Continued volatility in global markets and recent concerns about this quarter's iPhone sales pushed shares of Apple lower in pre-market trading, and resulted in the company's stock opening below $100 for the first time since October 20, 2014.
After closing at $100.70 on Wednesday, after-hours trading dropped Apple shares to $98.71 by the time markets opened. While Wall Street in general is reeling from steep market declines in China, Apple is also facing concerns from investors and analysts over demand for the company's iPhone. Reports earlier this week from both Chinese suppliers and sources speaking with The Wall Street Journal claim that Apple has asked its suppliers to cut iPhone 6s production by 30 percent this quarter in the face of significant unsold inventory in many countries.
If the alleged production cut actually represents lower demand and sales for the iPhone, Apple risks seeing this quarter experience the first year-over-year decline in iPhone sales in the device's history.
Many analysts reacted to the news with slight downgrades of Apple's outlook, but others suggest that better-than-expected sales of older, cheaper iPhone models are to blame for the reduced demand of the company's latest devices. Analysts expect Apple to provide more information on the current state of demand and production at the company's quarterly earnings call on January 26th.
Shares of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) have partially stabilized in early trading, but remain below $100, at $99.42 as of the time of publication.