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Apple warning hits Dow, major stock averages move lower at open

2 Views· 02/22/20
Aryel Narvasa
Aryel Narvasa

CNBC's Bob Pisani looks ahead at the day's market action.

Here’s what five experts say investors should watch regarding Apple’s expectations of a financial hit because of the coronavirus outbreak in China.

A day after the announcement, Apple stock was down 3% at midday Tuesday.

Jim Cramer, host of CNBC’s “Mad Money,” says long-term believers of Apple’s bull case should buy in here.

“I am surprised it’s not down more because it’s not just supply. It’s demand. Demand has to come down because they don’t do much shopping in China and with supply, it’s not them. It’s supply chain and some of the companies that need to give them the supplies, they can switch their six or seven plants in that Hubei area that are halted. … I think there’s just not a lot of people that want to sell anything. … I think a lot of people thought this would happen and we’re just waiting for that shoe to fall. I can’t come up with a reason short term to buy it. I do think that if you believe the coronavirus is going to get better, you buy it right here.”
Mike Volpi, general partner at Index Ventures, says a stock reaction is to be expected as Apple gets squeezed on the supply and demand side.

“Not entirely surprising. If you look at what’s happening in China right now, there’s over 150 million people that have some kind of a restriction — can’t leave their home, can’t travel. That’s over 10% of the population and Apple faces a bit of a double whammy in that when people can’t travel and leave their homes, they can’t buy phones, they can’t buy iPads and so forth and at the same time, all of their production is in China, so you get hit on the supply side and on the demand side. So in some sense, not totally surprising.”
Daniel Flax, senior research analyst at Neuberger Berman, says overall demand still remains healthy.

“I think what’s important here is that people are demanding the devices which are innovative, the ecosystem remains healthy, newer growth drivers like wearables are doing very, very well for the company and so this is of course tragic for China and the people globally that are being impacted, but we see it largely as supply related and of course a little bit of demand impacted in China for the company.”

William Power, senior research analyst at Robert W. Baird, says demand outside of China should offset the impact.

“This has been an ecosystem story for some time. We think that remains very much intact. You still got a services business that’s growing mid-teens, you got a wearables business the grew north of 30%. I think one of the key comments out of the release last night was that they’re still seeing very strong demand outside of China. Expectations are still in line on that front. So this really hasn’t extended beyond China — obviously a terrible human toll — and we think ultimately is more of a temporary impact.”

Gene Munster, founder of Loup Ventures, says this stock reaction is less than other warnings in the past.

“I think it’s important to point out in the context this is the second time in six quarters that Apple’s missed numbers. China was part of it back in December of 2018. At that point, if you look at the stock, that was a well-telegraphed miss but the trajectory downward was 35%. And so we’re talking about one-10th of the reaction versus six quarters ago. I think that context is important because, on large, investors are viewing this as something that is transitional, this black swan type of event, and we’ll move through it.”

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