Earnings preview: Wall Street expects 57M iPhones shipped in a record March quarter for Apple

Posted:
in AAPL Investors edited April 2015
Apple is once again expected to have set a new quarterly record in March when it announces earnings this afternoon, with investors on average expecting blockbuster iPhone sales to drive about $56 billion in revenue.




Apple will report the results of its March quarter after markets close later today. According to analyst Gene Munster of Piper Jaffray, Wall Street estimates call for the company to have shipped about 57 million iPhones in the three-month span.

That would easily set a new record for the company -- in the same quarter a year ago, Apple shipped a then-best 43.7 million iPhones.

Beyond the iPhone, a big part of today's call is expected to be Apple's reassessment of its massive capital return program, which includes both a quarterly dividend and a share buyback program.

Munster believes Apple will have a "headline number" of about $170 billion for its revamped capital return program. The company had a massive $179 billion in cash at the end of the preceding December quarter.

Apple first announced a $45 billion capital reinvestment program in March of 2012, funding a quarterly dividend and share repurchases. The company increased its plan to $100 billion in April of 2013.

Remaining consensus for the March quarter calls for Apple to have shipped 14 million iPads and 4.7 million Macs. Investors generally expect gross margins of about 39.5 percent, which would be on the high end of Apple's guidance range.

And while analysts will undoubtedly be clamoring for sales figures on the Apple Watch, it's highly unlikely that Apple will provide any hard data on the newly debuted product during today's call. Friday's launch falls under the June quarter, and Apple has already said it will not be giving out unit numbers for the wearable device.

Revenue excluding foreign exchange is expected on Wall Street to be $56 billion, while reported revenue including foreign exchange should be about $54 billion. Apple's guidance for the March quarter was between $52 billion and $55 billion. Finally, investors expect earnings per share to be around $2.12.

Apple will report its March quarter results this afternoon after markets close. The company's executive team will then hold a conference call with analysts and members of the media at 2 p.m. Pacific, 5 p.m. Eastern. AppleInsider will have full coverage.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 27
    dr millmossdr millmoss Posts: 5,403member
    Consensus EPS is $2.16 The $2.12 number cited here is Munster's forecast only, not what investors are expecting. Investors will be looking for around $2.35.
  • Reply 2 of 27
    blah64blah64 Posts: 887member
    RadarTheKat, how are you playing this quarter's earnings report? I ask because I seem to remember you played the volatility angle last quarter and did well, and it seems to be shaping up similarly, no?

    Bloomberg reports: A Chicago Board Options Exchange volatility gauge for Apple shares has jumped 42 percent since a low in March, while a measure of Nasdaq 100 swings has fallen 2.3 percent. The Apple VIX closed at 2.4 times the level of the Nasdaq 100 VIX last week, the highest ratio between the two since October 2013.
  • Reply 3 of 27
    I'll be looking to sell after this report, so here's hoping we get a price spike.
  • Reply 4 of 27
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,835member
    sog35 wrote: »
    Good time to buy if you are not too heavy in Apple.

    $150 price target for this year.

    Right now I have $45k in Apple stock so I'm too heavy to buy anymore shares.

    What are you talking about I've more than 20 x times that and don't feel too loaded and still buying more!
  • Reply 5 of 27
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,076member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

     

     

    My general rule is I don't invest more than 20% of my investments in a single stock.  

     

    I did break my general rule in 2013 when the price was ridiculously cheap.

     

    What percentage of your investments are in Apple?


     

    I've got pretty much the exact same thing. Best investment I've ever made. Rest of my portfolio is trash. 

  • Reply 6 of 27
    dr millmossdr millmoss Posts: 5,403member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post





    What are you talking about I've more than 20 x times that and don't feel too loaded and still buying more!



    What he is talking about is his own financial position, something nobody else can presume to know about, let alone, question.

  • Reply 7 of 27

    These are just mind-blowing numbers/estimates.

     

    Consider that Apple's revenues this year alone will be comfortably higher than the cumulative revenues from the day that Steve Jobs returned to the company through to the introduction of the iPhone in 2007 (and almost through to the introduction of the iPad in 2010). Wow.

     

    Is that a collective sob I hear from Seoul?

  • Reply 8 of 27
    eightzeroeightzero Posts: 2,210member

    AI posted a NASDAQ pic with the article, but of course AAPL is now a Dow component.

     

    This quarter seems like status quo, but I think it possible that WWDC will really be a watershed event for AAPL this year. Lots of room for new things, particularly AppleTV and related services.

  • Reply 9 of 27
    dr millmossdr millmoss Posts: 5,403member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Slurpy View Post

     

     

    I've got pretty much the exact same thing. Best investment I've ever made. Rest of my portfolio is trash. 




    Dealing with the portfolio trash issue is a better strategy longterm than betting the house on a single stock.

  • Reply 10 of 27
    dr millmossdr millmoss Posts: 5,403member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

     

     

    trash for this year?  The last 5 years have been great for the market.

     

    The rest of my investments besides Apple are in index funds (mostly S&P500) which is up 90% the last 5 years.  I usually just stick to index funds unless I see an individual stock that is dirt cheap.  I don't have time to buy and keep up with 20-30 individual stocks.




    Yes, this is a good strategy, especially if you are younger. Holding diversified ETFs is better overall..

  • Reply 11 of 27

    Great. So now we have endless Apple Watch stories to go along with the endless Apple iPhone stories.

     

    I remember when Apple used to be about computers.

     

    Hey, can you guys maybe do a story on why after 3 friggin updates Yosemite still keeps dropping my Goddamn wireless connection???

  • Reply 12 of 27

    It's an 5th gen Airport extreme.

     

    Worked fine on my old school Core Duo iMac running Snow Leopard.

     

    Got a new(er) iMac running Yosemite and it can't go more than a day without forgetting what network it's connected to.

  • Reply 13 of 27
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,415member
    Great. So now we have endless Apple Watch stories to go along with the endless Apple iPhone stories.

    I remember when Apple used to be about computers.

    Hey, can you guys maybe do a story on why after 3 friggin updates Yosemite still keeps dropping my Goddamn wireless connection???

    Phones and watches from Apple ARE computers and they will continue to follow the hockey stick technological curve that is Moore's Law. At some point, the watch will be as powerful as the phone is today.
  • Reply 14 of 27
    quadra 610quadra 610 Posts: 6,741member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by pondosinatra View Post

     

    Great. So now we have endless Apple Watch stories to go along with the endless Apple iPhone stories.

     

    I remember when Apple used to be about computers.

     

    Hey, can you guys maybe do a story on why after 3 friggin updates Yosemite still keeps dropping my Goddamn wireless connection???




    Notwithstanding your wireless issue (have you considered another router? Have you forwarded this issue to Apple's forums?)...   the other big story that's been getting plenty of coverage is the new MacBook. Which is indeed a computer. Apple is all about MacBooks, because they keep updating their notebooks (and releasing new additions to the family) fairly regularly, or as regularly as anyone that likes to keep their product lines simple and streamlined.  

  • Reply 15 of 27
    jfc1138jfc1138 Posts: 3,090member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by pondosinatra View Post

     

    Great. So now we have endless Apple Watch stories to go along with the endless Apple iPhone stories.

     

    I remember when Apple used to be about computers.

     

    Hey, can you guys maybe do a story on why after 3 friggin updates Yosemite still keeps dropping my Goddamn wireless connection???




    Watches and phones from Apple ARE computers.

     

    Somebody could be stepping on your signal: household environments are ever changing. Try a different channel, maybe router placement etc.

  • Reply 16 of 27
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,591member
    I think 57MM seems a bit high. Whatever number is announced, I'm sure it'll be a record. Hopefully they'll drop a number for Apple watches for this one-time event just to shut the trolls up.
  • Reply 17 of 27
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,415member
    jungmark wrote: »
    I think 57MM seems a bit high. Whatever number is announced, I'm sure it'll be a record. Hopefully they'll drop a number for Apple watches for this one-time event just to shut the trolls up.

    By definition trolls are un-shut-uppable.
  • Reply 18 of 27
    I remember when Apple used to be about computers.

    And now they put most of their focus in other areas. Companies can change, ya know.

    At least Apple still sells computers... while doing a damn good job at it.

    Now look at how many failing computer companies merged with other failing computer companies... or were simply wiped off the face of the Earth. The PC market has been littered with corpses over the years.
  • Reply 19 of 27
    Actually, AAPL is still a NASDAQ stock, although it is also in the Dow.
  • Reply 20 of 27
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by sog35 View Post

     

     

    your definition of computers is stuck in 1980




    Now get off my lawn!!

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