Apple Watch sales remain a mystery after quarterly earnings prompt share slide

Missed expectations for iPhone sales wiped $60 billion off the company’s market value

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Apple shares sunk seven per cent in after-hours trading after the company released quarterly results that missed some analysts expectations for iPhone sales.

Apple sold 35 per cent more iPhones in the three months to June than in the same period a year earlier, some 47.5 million, though this fell short of expectations that 49 million would be sold. The gap wiped $60 billion off the company’s market value.

Apple remained tight-lipped on how the Apple Watch had sold, which was expected, but some investors might also have taken this as a signal to sell, analysts said.

Shares dropped to $121 on Tuesday evening, down from $130 when markets closed.

Apple said it made a net profit of $10.7 billion in the three months to June, up from $7.7 billion in the same three months of 2014. International sales account for 64 per cent of revenue. Sales of iPhones in China doubled in the period.

Apple did not release separate sales for iPhone. Tim Cook, Apple CEO, said that decision had been made not to give competitors insight into the performance of the watch. He added that sales of the watch had exceeded internal expectations, even though the company could not keep up with demand.

Now the company has set its sights on the Christmas holiday period, hoping sales will shoot up when present-buying starts.

'Picky analysts' were to blame for the fall in Apple shares overnight, according to Eileen Burbidge, partner at technology investor Passion Capital. She told BBC Radio 5's 'Wake Up Money' that Apple has consistently beat expectations in the past and investors get nervous if they start to see any slowdown in iPhone sales.