Apple Faces Potential Investor Lawsuit for Not Warning of Weak iPhone Demand

The iPhone was once Apple’s biggest boon. Now it’s becoming the company’s biggest headache

"I think there are a heck of a lot of United States companies that have a lot of sales in China that are basically going to be watching their earnings be downgraded next year until we get a deal with China".

Business Insider reports that the NY law firm Bernstein Liebhard has begun to attempt to gather support from Apple investors for a class-action lawsuit against the tech giant over their failure to warn investors about the lack of iPhone demand. Apple's stock had fallen 32 percent from an October peak to its close of $157.92 Wednesday amid growing concerns about the iPhone.

Apple's decline dragged down the Dow Jones Industrial Average index on Thursday. Services generated $10.8 billion in revenue for the quarter - a 27 percent increase from a year earlier. The Christmas and New Year holiday period is traditionally an especially busy time for Apple as it follows the release of new iPhone models.

Also in some other markets, not so many users were switched to the indoor on the new iPhones as intended, acknowledged Apple.

"Beyond China, we don't see strong evidence of a consumer slowdown heading into 2019, but we just flag to investors that we believe Apple's replacement rates are likely much more sensitive to the macro now that the company is approaching maximum market penetration for the iPhone".

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A number of media have reported on Chinese technology companies that are forbidding or fining employees from buying iPhones, and offering subsidies for buying Huawei phones.

The rare warning of disappointing results from Apple sent a shudder through markets Thursday and reinforced fears that the world's second-largest economy is weakening.

Apple is one of the most powerful tech companies on the planet. He also said Apple is seeing fewer iPhone upgrades than expected, which partially accounted for the new guidance.

"While macroeconomic challenges in some markets were a key contributor to this trend, we believe there are other factors broadly impacting our iPhone performance, including consumers adapting to a world with fewer carrier subsidies, USA dollar strength-related price increases, and some customers taking advantage of significantly reduced pricing for iPhone battery replacements", Cook conceded. Apple's announcement suggests corporate earnings estimates may be too lofty given challenges facing the global economy.

Wednesday's cut to the sales forecast marked the first time Apple has revised its guidance to investors in more than 15 years, prompting the share price plunge. "iPhone, in particular, was very strong double-digit growth there". Mid-level officials from the Trump administration are scheduled to travel to Beijing for talks early next week. We knew this would create a hard compare for the first quarter of 2019, and this played out broadly in line with its expectations.

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