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iPad dips, but Apple ripens

Apple produced mixed blessings for investors this week, reporting flagging iPad sales, but an increase in iPhone sales, profits and in all-important margins.

Apple yesterday announced revenue of $45.6 billion and quarterly net profit of $10.2 billion, or $11.62 per diluted share for its fiscal 2014 second quarter ended 29 March.

These results compare to revenue of $43.6 billion and net profit of $9.5 billion, or $10.09 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 39.3 percent compared to 37.5 percent in the year-ago quarter.

Flagging iPad sales – 16,3-million compared to 19,5-million for the same period last year – put a dampener on the results with its 16,4% decline. However, iPhone sales rose 18% over the same period, to 43,7-million, partly thanks to the phones going on sale in China.

International sales accounted for 66 percent of the quarter’s revenue.

We’re very proud of our quarterly results, especially our strong iPhone sales and record revenue from services,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “We’re eagerly looking forward to introducing more new products and services that only Apple could bring to market.

“We generated $13.5 billion in cash flow from operations and returned almost $21 billion in cash to shareholders through dividends and share repurchases during the March quarter,” said Peter Oppenheimer, Apple’s CFO. “That brings cumulative payments under our capital return programme to $66 billion.

Apple is providing the following guidance for its fiscal 2014 third quarter:

• revenue between $36 billion and $38 billion

• gross margin between 37 percent and 38 percent

• operating expenses between $4.4 billion and $4.5 billion

• other income/(expense) of $200 million

• tax rate of 26.1 percent

* Follow Gadget on Twitter on @GadgetZA

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