Apple plummets $55BILLION in value after firm is forced to slash its revenue predictions as Tim Cook blames China and admits there were ‘fewer iPhone upgrades’ than expected globally

Thursday, January 3, 2019
By Paul Martin

iPhone, Mac and iPad sales all down in China – one of Apple’s biggest markets
Apple expects to report $84bn in revenue for Christmas quarter – down $5bn
CEO Tim Cook cited ‘fewer iPhone upgrades’ as one reason for the lower outlook
Apple shares slid approximately 7.5% in after-hours trading following the news
Tech giant may have to slash prices and offer cheap upgrades to increase sales

3 January 2019

Apple’s value plunged by $55billion (£44billion) and its shares were briefly suspended after a shock slowdown in iPhone sales over Christmas was revealed.

CEO Tim Cook’s letter to investors downgrading sales by $5billion over the past three months spooked Wall Street because the festive period is traditionally the tech giant’s busiest time of the year.

He cited economic weakness in China, which accounts for 20 per cent of its global sales, as one of the primary reasons for ‘fewer iPhone upgrades’ while Mac computer and iPad sales also fell.

The market panicked and Apple shares were briefly halted as Mr Cook made his announcement that the quarter’s revenues would be $84billion instead of $89billion – a five per cent fall and the firm’s first decline since 2016.

Stocks then slid 7.5 per cent to $146.23 – wiping $55billion (£44billion) off its value in minutes – and the market shock also forced Amazon and Microsoft shares down with the FTSE 100 following today.

Experts said today that the poor sales suggest the lure of the iPhone could be waning and the Silicon Valley company will focus on making more cash from its services including iTunes, the App Store, iCloud and Apple Pay.

Wedbush Securities analyst Daniel Ives said consumers are going for cheaper Samsung and Huawei handsets, adding: ‘This is Apple’s darkest day during the Cook era. No one expected China to just fall off a cliff like this’.

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