Analyst: No Major Apple Announcements Until June
Analyst Gene Munster who previously suggested that Apple would hold an event in March/April has now released a new investor note saying no major product announcements are expected until June.
Fortune highlights his key points:
● No major product announcements until June. Even if there is an April event it's likely to focus on incremental upgrades to the iPad and/or iTunes, and is unlikely to move shares.
● Revenues for this quarter are expected to come in at $41.3 billion -- at the low end of the company's $41-$43 billion guidance and below the Street's current consensus of $42.8 billion, as reported by Thomson Finance.
● He estimates iPhone sales of 35.5 million and Mac sales of 3.8 million, considerably below the 37 million iPhones and 4.2 million Macs he says are implied by the Street's revenue expectations.
● He believes the Street is factoring in a 39%-40% gross margin. He's expecting 38%, right in the middle of the company's 37.5% to 38.5% guidance.
● Apple could also disappoint the Street with its June guidance. Thomson Finance has the consensus at $40.2 billion. Munster thinks it will be closer to $36 to $38 billion.
● He expects only a modest dividend increase -- from the current $10.60 a year to about $14 -- and no increase in Apple's stock buyback program.
Although his points aren't the most encouraging, he is upbeat on AAPL overall.
"We believe the risk reward to owning shares of AAPL is favorable given the back half of the year will likely have several product announcements that should reaccelerate earnings growth from a negative 14% in the first half of 2013 to a positive 15% in the back half. While we believe that current Street numbers are too high for March and June, we view the risk around the quarter and guide as small as the March report and June guide will likely mark the turning point as investors look to the back half opportunity with new product launches. We reiterate our Overweight and $767 price target."