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Why Apple, Inc. Stock Popped 5% Wednesday

By Daniel Sparks - Updated May 2, 2018 at 2:53PM

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Apple is proving skeptics wrong.

What happened

Shares of technology giant Apple (AAPL 2.45%) jumped as much as 5.1% on Wednesday, following the company's fiscal second-quarter earnings release. The stock is trading 5% higher at the time of this writing.

Bullishness toward Apple stock on Wednesday reflects the company's better-than-expected revenue, earnings per share, and guidance. In addition, a handful of upbeat analyst reports have been published since the earnings release, likely playing a role in some of the investor optimism for Apple on Wednesday.

An Apple customer holding the iPhone X on launch day

iPhone X. Image source: Apple.

So what

For Apple's fiscal second quarter, revenue and earnings per share increased 16% and 30% year over year to $61.1 billion and $2.73, respectively. These were ahead of consensus analyst estimates for revenue and earnings per share of $61 billion and $2.69.

The iPhone X continued to sell well, outselling every iPhone model each week since the phone's launch. In addition, Apple's services and other products segments helped propel revenue higher. Services revenue increased 31% year over year, and other products revenue increased 38% during the same period. Together, these segments accounted for a meaningful 21% of revenue.

Analysts seemed pleased with the report. RBC Capital Market analyst Amit Daryanani said the report proves skeptics wrong. Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty admitted that Apple's third-quarter guidance implies that the meaningful downside she expected from iPhone in Apple's third quarter "didn't come to fruition."

Now what

Looking ahead, Apple expects its strong year-over-year growth to persist. Management guided for fiscal third-quarter revenue to be between $51.5 billion and $53.5 billion. The midpoint of this guidance range implies 16% year-over-year revenue growth for the period. 

Apple CEO Tim Cook was very optimistic about the company's business during the second-quarter earnings call:

We're now halfway through our fiscal 2018 with nearly $150 billion in revenues and double-digit growth in all of our geographic segments. We've generated almost $34 billion in earnings in six months, and we're very bullish on Apple's future. We have the best pipeline of products and services we've ever had.

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