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Should I Buy Apple Stock?

By Daniel B. Kline – May 16, 2020 at 9:12AM

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The new iPhone is delayed, and the company has suffered from its retail stores being closed.

Before the pandemic, Apple (AAPL -1.51%) was flying high. In its second quarter, which closed March 28, the company saw its revenue climb by 1% year over year to $58.3 billion, while earnings per share rose by 4% to $2.55.

The coronavirus had begun to impact many of the company's markets around the world during the quarter, but apparently, that did not stop Apple from putting up some very impressive numbers.

"Despite COVID-19's unprecedented global impact, we're proud to report that Apple grew for the quarter, driven by an all-time record in Services and a quarterly record for Wearables," said Apple CEO Tim Cook in a press release. "In this difficult environment, our users are depending on Apple products in renewed ways to stay connected, informed, creative, and productive."

Apple CEO Tim Cook

Apple CEO Tim Cook remains confident. Image source: Apple.

What's next for Apple?

The coronavirus has still impacted Apple -- the company has delayed the release of its new iPhone, though it should still be released in time for the 2020 holiday season. Apple has also had to close its retail stores around the world, though those have slowly been reopening.

Apple has likely benefited from people having to work from home, which requires laptops and other technology that the company sells. That was certainly the case in Q2. "Our active installed base of devices reached an all-time high in all of our geographic segments and all major product categories," said CFO Luca Maestri in the press release. "We also generated operating cash flow of $13.3 billion during the quarter, up $2.2 billion over a year ago."

Apple has also reaffirmed that it will be paying its quarterly dividend, which it raised by 6% to $0.82 per share. It is also adding $50 billion to its share buyback program.

"We are confident in our future and continue to make significant investments in all areas of our business to enrich our customers' lives and support our long-term plans -- including our five-year commitment to contribute $350 billion to the United States economy," Maestri added.

Should you buy Apple stock?

The pandemic has made operations harder for Apple, and it may put short-term pressure on its earnings. It's possible that the third quarter shows a slowdown in revenue as consumers curtail discretionary purchases. It's also possible that pandemic-based needs actually drove an increase in sales.
As an investor or potential investor in Apple, however, the Q3 results don't matter. The company has clearly been built for the long-term. Some revenue may be delayed, but consumers will eventually need to upgrade their devices, get repairs made, and buy new software.
Apple has been trading fairly close to its 52-week high, but that should not dissuade you. This is a company that has loyal customers, multiple streams of revenue, and a strong reputation.
This is a long-term buy, a high-quality company that's built to deliver recurring revenue. Sales have already started bouncing back in China, and there's no reason to believe that the rest of the world won't follow -- if they even fell in the first place.

Daniel B. Kline owns shares of Apple. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Apple. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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