Apple shares plunge on Jobs health concerns

22-07-2008

Apple shares plunge on Jobs health concerns
Concerns over the health of Apple chief executive Steve Jobs overshadowed the company's results yesterday, sending shares down.

Apple posted revenue of $7.46 billion (£3.72 billion) and net profit of $1.07 billion (£0.53 billion) for the quarter, on higher Mac and iPhone sales.

However, the apparent weight loss of the company's head and a conservative outlook sparked a shares decline of ten per cent in after-hours trading.

Mr Jobs underwent surgery four years ago for pancreatic cancer, which Apple did not disclose until after the operation. The company attributed his thinner appearance to a "common bug" and said Mr Jobs is taking antibiotics.

The New York Post reported several investors and hedge fund managers are worried the company does not have a clear successor to Mr Jobs.

In announcing the company's quarterly results, which exceeded market expectations, Mr Jobs said: "We're proud to report the best June quarter for both revenue and earnings in Apple's history.

"We set a new record for Mac sales, we think we have a real winner with our new iPhone 3G, and we're busy finishing several more wonderful new products to launch in the coming months."

Mr Jobs did not give any more details as to what the new products would be.

During the quarter, Apple sold 717,000 iPhone units following the launch of the iPhone 3G, as well as over 11 million iPods.

Peter Oppenheimer, Apple's chief financial officer added: "Looking ahead to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2008, we expect revenue of about $7.8 billion (£3.89 billion) and earnings per diluted share of about $1.00 (£0.50)."

Analysts were expecting revenue of $8.32 billion (£4.15 billion) and earnings of $1.24 (£0.62) a share.

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