Apple has bought back some $14 billion (£8.5 billion) of its own stock in the fortnight following the company’s disappointing Q1 results.
Those results saw Apple break its earnings record (again) and the record for the number of iPhones sold (again), but the stock dipped considerably – by almost 10 per cent – on the back of this.
The problem is that while those iPhone sales were far from bad, Christmas sales of Apple’s premium handsets came in at less than the analysts expected. And as everyone knows, that’s bad news…
So Reuters reports that Apple has repurchased this large chunk of $12 billion (£7.3 billion) stock via an accelerated share repurchase program, along with $2 billion (£1.2 billion) of shares picked up on the open market.
CEO Tim Cook spoke of his surprise at the decline in stock market value when he talked to the Wall Street Journal. Cook asserted that Apple is confident in itself going forward, and all the stock buying (this isn’t the first purchase) is because “we are betting on Apple.”
The future is bright, the future is… green?
The truth is, though, that these slight signs of shakiness – missing analyst forecasts – are starting to worry investors more and more, particularly in the light of Apple not having pushed a revolutionary product onto the market since the iPad.
An innovative spark of a gadget is needed to inflame investors’ desires, which at the moment looks like it might be the iWatch. Something is needed – or Cupertino will continue to watch its stock ebb away.
In September 2012 Apple stock hit $700 (£430), and it’s now at $520 (£320).