RUSH: Ladies and gentlemen, yesterday Apple Computer reported the biggest quarter in revenue in the history of businesses and financial reporting. Apple Computer also reported the fourth most profitable quarter ever posted by any company ever. The most revenue in a quarter ever and the fourth most profitable quarter. And the stock is in a free fall. After hours plunged 10 percent, now down 11 to 12 percent. How can that happen? How can a company with the fourth most profitable quarter ever and the most revenue ever, crash?
There are two answers. One is analysts on the street, and the other is the media.
I know many of you get irritated with me for talking about Apple and my iPhones and all that stuff that I love, but there is, I think, an object lesson here. It has nothing to do with Apple, except as they have become an enemy. Much like anybody else who is successful has become the enemy. Plus, it’s also the ribald competition of capitalism. There’s a whole bunch of fascinating stuff about this to me.
RUSH: Apple shares down 11 to 12 percent on the fourth most profitable quarter ever posted by any company ever. And in terms of revenue, the biggest quarter ever in the history of quarters in the history of revenue in the history of business in the history of the world. And the stock is tanking. And there are reasons that the stock is tanking. And one of the reasons the stock is tanking is the Wall Street stock market is really a futures game. They don’t reward you for what is happening. The analysts base their guidance on what they think the future’s going to be. And Apple gave its predictions, called guidance, for the next quarter and it didn’t make anybody happy.
Now, Apple has been a target. Apple is the new IBM. Everybody hated IBM. Everybody hates Apple because they’re the biggest and most popular and everybody loves them. So everybody hates them. Even though they’re good liberals out there, everybody hates them. They didn’t do themselves any favor by winning a lawsuit against Samsung. The big guys are supposed to take it in the shorts. The big guys are supposed to bend over and grab the ankles and let the little guys have whatever they want as punishment for being a big guy. But Apple said, “Screw you; you’re stealing our stuff, our designs.” They took them to court, patent lawsuits, infringement. They won a billion dollar settlement. That did not make the media happy. I read the tech blogs, as I’ve mentioned, and there’s a snarkiness for Apple throughout the tech media.
RUSH: Wouldn’t have got away with it. Exactly right. Nobody would have been praising that as a brilliant strategic retort. Janice, let me ask you a question. Do you have an iPad or an iPhone? Would you like either one?
CALLER: Are you kidding me?
CALLER: Oh my God, I was just going to tell you that I bought Apple stock. It went down and now I can’t afford to get my iPad. (laughing) Oh my God, I’d love one, an iPad.
RUSH: At what price did you buy your Apple stock?
CALLER: Well, when I first bought it, my husband said, “Oh look, it’s dropping, let’s buy it,” at 580.31. And then when it dropped again last week he said, “Well, maybe we can average it out,” so we bought it again at 487.18. So now it has to at least get back to 538.
RUSH: It will in time. If you bought Apple at that price you’re looking at a long-term hold anyway. Apple right now is 454.
CALLER: It went down. I just checked it before and it was 455. But you know they do that with everybody. The popular culture does that with actors or with singers. They love, love, love somebody until somebody else loves them, and then they have to destroy them.
RUSH: Well, who is “they” in your example here when it comes to Apple?
CALLER: I guess people who don’t like Apple.
RUSH: Who is that? Who is that when you say “they” don’t like Apple, “they’re” doing this, because I think I know who it is. I think I understand exactly what’s going on here with Apple. If you read the tech blogs that I read, you’d understand. It’s astounding to me how much they’re hated by a bunch of 24-, 25-year-old pimply faced snarky tech guys, they’re despised.
CALLER: But why is that? They make such a great product. I have a MacBook Pro and I absolutely love it.
RUSH: I’m going to tell you why. Now, you’re not going to believe this, but in one example, the tech guys have been waiting for Apple to put what’s called an NFC chip in the phone, near field communication. The NFC chip is what you would make mobile payments with. Apple has refused to put an NFC chip in, and the venom and the hatred every time a new phone comes out that it doesn’t have the NFC chip in it. These snarky tech guys absolutely blow gaskets and talk about how out of touch Apple is and how obstinate and arrogant, condescending, and how they deserve a comeuppance and so forth. That’s just one of hundreds of such examples.
CALLER: Yeah, but Rush, remember what you always say, it’s not bragging if you can do it. And they do it.
RUSH: Well, I know. I think also, Apple is the big guy, they’re successful. Like you said, part of our culture is we build people up and rip them to shreds. Tear them down. Sports stars and celebrities, like you said, it happens. And it happens with companies, too. You have analysts on Wall Street who may be pushing the stock down to sell short. There’s any number of things, which all come within allowable constraints, allowable things, given the natures of capitalism. But when you have the most revenue ever, the forth most profitable quarter ever and the bottom falls out of your stock, it’s curious.
Now what they’re saying is, well, Apple’s salad days are over. They haven’t come out with a new defining product in a couple of years. There’s nothing new. And their future profit isn’t going to be big, and their future revenue isn’t going to be big. And no Steve Jobs. All these things are getting thrown into the mix, and then you’ve got analysts on CNBC going on television, “It’s a wrecked company. It’s a broken company.” And every tech company in the world would kill to be Apple. Anyway, it’s a fascinating thing for me to look at the way the media, in this case the financial media, which is also leftist, and some of the stock market people are doing what they can to make this happen.
CALLER: But even Stuart Varney is making fun of us.
RUSH: Making fun of who?
CALLER: Of the Apple stock owners, you know, because he lost so much on Microsoft. So I guess he thinks we’re getting our comeuppance.
RUSH: See, there’s all kinds of that stuff, too. Human nature. So you want an iPad?
CALLER: Oh my God, you can’t imagine.
RUSH: A big one or a mini?
CALLER: I think the big one.
RUSH: Okay. I’ll send you a big one. And you want Verizon or AT&T? It’s got cellular radio in it. You can choose.
CALLER: I have AT&T. In fact, I’m grand-fathered in on my phone.
RUSH: Then we’ll send you one of those, hang on. We’ll get your FedEx address, and you will have it tomorrow.
CALLER: Thank you so much.
RUSH: You are more than welcome.
RUSH: Folks, I’ve got to give Apple stuff away while people still want it. By next week nobody’s going to want anything Apple makes. Well, just to give you an example. Wall Street analysts, these are people you’ve never met. These are people that advise consumers on how to invest their money. The Street. Wall Street analysts got together and their consensus guess on the number of iPhones sold over the Christmas quarter was 50 million, between 50 and 52 million. Apple sold about 48 million. It’s crisis panic time. Oh, no, the bottom’s falling out.
Well, no, I don’t know why these analysts are saying this. They don’t work at Apple. They have no idea. This is what they’re expecting. If Apple is going great guns, this is what’s going to happen. If it doesn’t happen, see, Apple is not going great guns. People say, “Oh my gosh, the analysts say…” and people start selling stock. And then it gets even crazier than that. “How many of those 48 million iPhones were iPhone 5s? Maybe people don’t even like the new iPhone, they’re buying the old ones. Apple’s really screwing up now. People don’t even want their new phone.” This is the kind of stuff that’s out there. And none of these people have anything to do with it. They’re just media people. So even though you might resent me talking about Apple, what we’re talking about here is media, and how media is able to influence things, particularly with people that don’t know what’s going on.