Apple Inc. (AAPL) - Get Report said Tuesday it will hold its annual Apple Event next week, amid speculation that the tech giant will unveil a new suite of 5G-compliant iPhones despite coronavirus-linked production delays.
Apple said the Event will take place at 10:00 am Pacific Time on Tuesday, September 15 at the Steve Jobs Theater on the company's Cupertino, California campus. Japan's Nikkei Asian Review reported earlier Tuesday that Apple is preparing to begin production on its range of 5G iphones later this month, a decision that would narrow delays in production and potentially available for large-scale buying into the holiday season.
Apple shares were marked 4% lower in early Tuesday trading, falling just ahead of the pace of the broader Nasdaq Composite Index, to change hands at $116.05 each.
Apple shares have lost more than $180 billion in value over the past three days, and extended declines Tuesday following a report from Goldman Sachs that suggested its sales and earnings momentum were not strong enough to justify its current valuation.
In a note to clients, Goldman analyst Rod Hall wrote that the company’s growth rates “aren’t consistent with the narrative that has driven the stock to its highest premium vs. the S&P 500 since 2011,” and that other tech giants like Amazon and Microsoft “are delivering the numbers and yet are valued at about the same multiple as Apple.”
However, Wedbush analyst Dan Ives, who carries the highest price target for Apple on Wall Street -- $700 in his 'bull scenario' -- said Tuesday that "Asia supply chain checks over the last few weeks conducted by our TMT team have given us further conviction into our iPhone 12 5G supercycle thesis heading into this Fall."
Ives has argued that Apple has a once in a decade' opportunity to take advantage of iPhone upgrades ahead of the advance of 5G infrastructure rollouts and the launch of the iPhone 12.
Ives says around 350 million of the 950 million iPhones in circulation could be upgraded over the next 12 to 18 months, with around 20% of those coming from China, arguably Apple's most important market.
Apple said earnings for the three months ending in June, the group's fiscal third quarter, rose 25.9% from the same period last year to $2.58 per share, well ahead of the $2.05 per share Street consensus forecast. Group revenues rose 13.4% to a Street-beating $59.7 billion, Apple said, with gains in every geographical region and across all product line.
iPhone revenues rose 2% from last year to a forecast-beating $26.4 billion, despite the COVID-19 headwinds, thanks in part to a solid debut for the $399 iPhone SE, which was launched earlier this year. iPad and iMac sales, meanwhile, rose 22% and 31% respectively as work-from-home shifts powered computer purchases. Services revenues were pegged at $13.2 billion, just shy of Apple's recent record and up 15% from last year.
Apple declined to offer a near-term profit forecast, "given the uncertainty around the world' and the ongoing COVID-19 impact, but noted that it expects to see continued gains for the iPhone, despite likely delays of "a few weeks" for its iPhone 12 launch in September.