AAPL Drops 4.3% Amidst Tech Retreat Led by Google, AMD

Shares in Apple Inc. traded lower in the Thursday afternoon session, dropping more than 4.3% amidst a broader retreat in tech stocks. Google and AMD kicked off the tech losses, as investors reacted negatively to earnings reports from both companies.

Shares in Google dropped after Google beat Street estimates, but failed to meet whisper numbers for the December quarter. The company reported revenue of US$4.95 billion, with profits of $1.97 billion or $6.13 a share. That's up from $382 million ($1.21 per share) in profits in the December quarter of 2008.

While revenue and earnings both surpassed analyst estimates, higher whisper numbers had been baked into Google's share price, at least in the minds of investors. In addition, Markewatch reported that Sandeep Aggarwal of Collins Stewart downgraded Google to a hold Friday, advising clients that Google needed to demonstrate an ability to grow its business outside of its core search engine.

Shares in Google were down, trading at $551.62 per share, lower by $31.36 (-5.38%) on strong volume.

AMD faced similar concerns, as investors reacted negatively to what otherwise seemed a positive earnings report released Thursday. Investors are, according to Marketwatch, concerned about AMD's ability to compete and grow its business going forward.

Shares in AMD traded sharply lower Friday afternoon at $7.90, down $1.09 (-12.12%) on very strong volume.

In the meanwhile, Apple has given up all of the gains Wall Street heaped upon the company following the news of a media event for January 27th. Shares were trading at $198.97, down 9.102 (-4.37%), on strong volume.

*In the interest of full disclosure, the author holds a small share in AAPL stock that was not an influence in the creation of this article.