Stock market sell-off worsens; Apple slides on report of weakening iPhone demand

Dow Jones futures declined more than 200 points in pre-market trading on Thursday, after the stock market sell-off worsened Wednesday. Apple stock slid on reportedly weak iPhone demand.

Is Apple stock primed for a big move?

Scott Lehtonen for Investor’s Business Daily:

Among the Dow Jones leaders, Apple (AAPL) traded down more than 3% early Thursday…

On Wednesday, the stock market sell-off worsened, as investors responded to identification of the first case of coronavirus variant omicron in the U.S. The major stock indexes fell sharply for a second straight session. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed below its long-term 200-day moving average. The S&P 500 gave up its key 50-day line. And the Nasdaq closed right at its own 50-day line.

Apple shares slid about 3% Thursday morning after Blomberg reported that Apple warned its component suppliers that demand for the iPhone 13 lineup has weakened.

Debby Wu, Takashi Mochizuki, and Giles Turner for Bloomberg News:

The company has told its component suppliers that demand for the iPhone 13 lineup has weakened, people familiar with the matter said, signaling that some consumers have decided against trying to get the hard-to-find item.

Already, Apple had cut its iPhone 13 production goal for this year by as many as 10 million units, down from a target of 90 million, because of a lack of parts, Bloomberg News reported. But the hope was to make up much of that shortfall next year — when supply is expected to improve. The company is now informing its vendors that those orders may not materialize, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the discussions are private.

The company is still on track for a record holiday season, with analysts projecting a sales increase of 6% to $117.9 billion in the final three months of the calendar year. But it won’t be the blockbuster quarter that Apple — and Wall Street — had originally envisioned. Shortages and delivery delays have frustrated many consumers. And with inflation and the omicron variant bringing fresh concerns to pandemic-weary shoppers, they may forgo some purchases.

That could mean skipping the iPhone 13 altogether and waiting to upgrade next year, when its successor comes out. The current lineup, which starts at $799 for the standard model and $999 for the Pro, is considered a modest update from the iPhone 12, which had a whole new design. Bigger changes are expected for the 2022 model, giving some shoppers a reason to wait.

MacDailyNews Take: This too shall pass. Apple longs, pick your spots. Take advantage when advantages present themselves.

Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. — Warren Buffett

And, by the way:

Apple should strive to execute annual iPhone updates… and drop the off-year “S” model concept. Apple is certainly big enough and rich enough to do a new iPhone family each and every year. Apple should have killed the tock year “S” model idea years ago… No more “S” years, Apple. Duh.

Apple’s raison d’être is to delight customers. “S” model “tock” year iPhones do not delight customers in the same way as new “tick” year models. Obviously. They’re still the best smartphones on the planet, but they’re just okay. A bit of a meh. We all know that “S” models exist so Apple can wring out nice margins from existing designs and tooling, not expressly to delight customers.

When Apple strays from its main goal is when things get wobbly. Just delight customers, Apple, and the world will beat a path to your door.MacDailyNews, April 12, 2016

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