Channing Smith of Capital Advisors sums it up well: "Clearly it was a disappointment."
As disappointing as Apple's quarter may have been for many, it was a non-event for most. Anyone concerned over the results of one quarter is not investing for the long term. The problem with public companies is they have to report results every quarter.Reporting every quarter is designed to stop fraud and abuse of shareholders, not to scrutinize every last sale. The spectacle of assigning importance to a single quarter's results is a media-driven invention. In order to sell newspapers, the press needs a story. If the media can demonstrate the importance of a single quarter, the media can generate four times more news. Unfortunately, business doesn't work that way. From a company point of view, one year is a small timeframe for most. Break it down to quarters and the data are usually little more than noise. Trying to value a company on one quarter is no different from looking at 10 random pieces of a 2,500-piece puzzle and trying to figure out what the picture is. In the last 90 or so days, China and Europe sales didn't impress analysts. Ok, so what? Does it matter? Of course not, because when taken as a whole the last 12, 24, or 36 months are not only impressive, they scream "Buy On Dips" over and over again. If you call yourself an Apple investor and not a trader, the last quarter and this quarter should garner the same reaction. Take a look at the numbers. Check if there is anything that may cause concern (slight variations in sales either up or down are not a cause for concern) like fraud or a drastic change in the marketplace. If there isn't anything material that will change the outlook for the next year, move on and spend your time reading another article in TheStreet that may give you another investment idea. Apple examined based on the last 12 months, or the next 12 months, is a great investment.