NY Post Downgrades Apple CEO's Weight to Underperform from Neutral
If Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer’s April forecast was correct, Apple will report earnings of $1 per share on revenue of $7.2 billion when it posts third-quarter earnings later this afternoon. Of course, the company is known for low-balling expectations and being conservative with its fiscal outlooks, so if its results surpass this forecast, no one will be much surprised. And, indeed, most analysts seem to feel it will. Those surveyed by FactSet Research expect Apple (AAPL) will earn $1.07 per share on revenue of $7.36 billion. Others, like Toni Sacconaghi, who covers Apple for Sanford Bernstein, and RBC Capital Market’s Mike Abramsky, are betting on the company to top consensus estimates with revenues well above $7.5 billion. An impressive number if Apple manages to hit it, especially since the company is deferring recognition of iPhone sales during the quarter.
Given all this then, why are Apple shares trading down this morning? Seems concerns about CEO Steve Jobs’s gaunt appearance at Apple’s World Wide Developers Conference in June have not subsided, nor will they, now that The New York Post is questioning his health. “Apple’s hedge fund investors are very worried,” said a Wall Street source who has spoken with some of the company’s stakeholders,” the Post reports. ” … Multiple sources who have met with–and in some cases even dined with–Jobs in the weeks surrounding the introduction of the iPhone 3G on July 11, said they came away troubled by his thin appearance.”