Apple shares recover as markets digest Jobs news

 

The sharp fall in Apple's share price in the wake of Steve Jobs' resignation wiped almost $20bn (£12.25bn) off the company's value within minutes of the news. But the slide had been largely halted last night as investors and Wall Street analysts predicted the company's growth would continue.

Tim Cook, who was elevated to the chief executive's job on Wednesday night after the ailing Mr Jobs said he could no longer fulfil his duties, has a strong pipeline of new product launches coming through and analysts said there was little sign that rivals could dent Apple's dominance of the smartphone and tablet computer markets.

Apple's stock, which fell 5 per cent in after-hours trading on Wednesday, was down just 1.3 per cent yesterday, less than the rest of the stock market, in lunchtime trading in New York. Apple is valued at $330bn, vying with ExxonMobil for the title of largest company in the world.

Colin Gillis, a technology analyst at BGC Partners, said: "The company has been effectively operating with Tim as chief executive and Steve as executive adviser for the last two quarters – and record results have been produced during that period.

"Steve Jobs is also leaving the company that he helped bring to life twice positioned for a long future with a massive cash position of $76bn, a new headquarters, a strong culture, and a set of products and ecosystems that are firing on all cylinders," Mr Gillis added.

Apple watchers are expecting a new version of the iPhone will be launched later this year, probably in September or October, with an updated iPad perhaps next year. There is also the potential for a lower cost model of an iPhone, analysts believe, and the opportunity to expand further in emerging markets such as China.

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