Tuesday, October 4, 2011

How Good is the Apple iPhone 4GS?

Apple unveiled the new iPhone 4GS today. Rather than pore through smoothly presented video presentations, let's answer the question with boring financial data!

Zooming in on the return today only:

Return on Apple Stock today: -0.56%
Return on the S&P 500 today:  2.25%
Beta of Apple: 0.87

Abnormal Return of Apple Stock today = -0.56 -2.25*0.87 = -2.52%
(taking the S&P 500 as my lazy man's market proxy)

i.e. It's disappointing. Given Apple's market cap of $345 billion, it's actually about $8.7 billion worth of disappointing.

You'd think that this kind of basic information would be easy to discern, but it took much more hassling around to find out a simple market-adjusted return than you might think.

Instead, the financial press reports useless and insipid descriptions like the following:
Investors were disappointed, too. Apple's stock fell more than 5 percent before getting a late bump.
That 'late bump' was entirely driven by the market movement, and tells you virtually nothing about Apple. Yeesh. No wonder people end up believing ridiculous folk tales like 'the market fell today as investors began to take profits from last week's rise'.

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