The holidays are being good to Apple, according to Global Equities analyst Trip Chowdhry. In a research note to clients, Mr. Chowdhry wrote, "Apple probably had the strongest Black Friday sales in its entire history."
Not bad for a company that's in the process of disappearing, right? If you remember, this same Trip Chowdhry said in early 2014 that if Apple didn't release the "iWatch" (as we all thought it would be called at that time) within 60 days, the company would disappear and become irrelevant.
Those 60 days came and went, along with a couple of hundred more, before the Apple Watch was released, and we have all mourned the company since.
My point being that A.) we haven't forgotten that bit of nonsense, and B.) just because Mr. Chowdhry is now saying something spiffy about Apple doesn't necessarily mean we should take it at face value.
With those caveats, Mr. Chowdhry told his clients that Apple's strategy of handing off Black Friday discounts to its retailing partners paid off, leading to the best Black Friday in its history. He pitched it as a move by Apple to help its retailing partners—something Apple isn't known for—but one that reaped benefits for Apple itself.
From Mr. Chowdhry's note (via Barron's):
Traditional retailers had been worried that 2015 and beyond Holiday sales is going to be dominated by Gadgets and they may be left behind and be a non-participant in this trend. Apple decided to help out the traditional retailers to sell Apple’s affordable aspirational platform including: iPhones, iPads, Apple Watch, Apple TV and Mac’s.
Apple Watch was probably the Number 1 selling item at Mail Order companies like B&H: $50 discount on Apple Watch, $50 B&H gift card, Zero Sales Tax (Everywhere other than New York, which is another 8% to 10% customer saving), Free shipping, Facebook (FB) drove significant traffic to B&H
Because of all the above, Apple Watch felt like a bargain
iPad Air 2 is the hottest gift item for kids 8 years and older; iPad mini for kids younger than 8 years: iPad Air 2 and iPad Mini are having a very strong holiday season iPad’s are emerging to be the first computing device of choice for Kids, with iPad mini starting at $199.
It bears noting that Apple reaches new highs with every Black Friday. It would have been the exception to the rule if this particular year Apple hadn't "had the strongest Black Friday sales in its entire history." Also, Apple itself hasn't announced holiday results or issued any statement about its performance during Black Friday.
Still, if Apple Watch is moving, that bodes well for its maker, even if Apple is merely a dead company walking.
As of this writing, shares of $AAPL traded higher during Monday's afternoon session at $118.58 per share, a gain of $0.77 (+0.65 percent), on moderate volume.
*In the interest of full disclosure, the author holds a tiny, almost insignificant share in AAPL stock that was not an influence in the creation of this article.