“With the hoopla surrounding Steve Jobs’ appearance at the annual Macworld show out of the way, Apple Inc. watchers will now shift their attention to the company’s fiscal first-quarter earnings report, scheduled for Jan. 22,” Rex Crum reports for MarketWatch.
“Analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial estimate Apple will earn $1.62 a share on revenue of $9.47 billion. Such forecasts call for Apple’s per-share earnings to rise 42%, and revenue to climb 33% from the prior-year period,” Crum reports.
MacDailyNews Note: On October 22, as Apple reported its fiscal 4th quarter results, Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer provided guidance for first quarter of fiscal 2008, “We expect revenue of about $9.2 billion and earnings per diluted share of about $1.42.”
Crum continues, “Retail research firm NPD Group says Apple’s iPods still maintain a lock on the top spot in U.S. sales of digital music and media players, with as much as 75% of the market. Gene Munster, who covers Apple for Piper Jaffray, said in a recent research note that based on NPD’s data for October and November, the first two months of Apple’s quarter point toward Apple meeting, and possibly exceeding that 25 million unit forecast. Munster holds an buy rating and $250 price target on Apple’s stock.”
“Shebly Seyrafi, an analyst with Caris & Co., said that checks of Apple retail stores and channels show the company’s “strong holiday sales stand in contrast to recent reports showing weak retail sales during the holidays. Seyrafi didn’t give estimates on Apple’s retail growth, but said the company appears to have bucked a trend that showed overall electronics retail sales in the U.S. rising just 2.7% over the same period in 2006,” Crum reports. “Seyrafi said that in Apple’s retail stores, the most popular items have been MacBook laptops, the new iPod touch and the video-playing iPod nano digital media players. Seyrafi also said interest in the iPhone remained high.”
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