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Apple shares rise at March quarterly rate




apple ( AAPL ) shares rose on Friday after the consumer electronics giant beat Wall Street targets for its second fiscal quarter on strong sales of iPhones and services. Apple also raised its quarterly dividend and share buyback plan.




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The Cupertino, California-based company said late Thursday that it earned $1.52 a share on sales of $94.8 billion for the quarter ended April 1. Analysts polled by FactSet had forecast Apple earnings of $1.43 a share on sales of $92.9 billion. On a year-on-year basis, Apple’s earnings were unchanged, while sales fell 3%. It was the second consecutive quarter of sales declines for Apple.

“We are pleased to report a record in services and a record March for iPhone despite the challenging macroeconomic environment,” CEO Tim Cook said in a press release.

Also, Apple increased its quarterly dividend by 4% to 24 cents per share. In addition, Apple’s board approved an additional $90 billion in share buybacks.

Apple shares rise after report

In premarket trading on the stock market today, Apple shares climbed 2.7% to 170.25. During the regular session Thursday, Apple shares fell 1% to close at 165.79.

Apple’s services revenue rose 5% year over year to $20.9 billion in the March quarter. But hardware revenue fell 5% to $73.9 billion.

In the March quarter, Apple’s iPhone revenue rose 2% to $51.3 billion. Smartphones accounted for 54% of the company’s total sales in the period.

Meanwhile, sales of Apple’s Mac computers fell 31% to $7.2 billion. Apple’s iPad sales fell 13% to $6.7 billion. And revenue from Apple’s wearables, home and accessories units fell a fraction to $8.8 billion.

Apple stock is on the IBD Tech Leaders list. It has an IBD Composite Rating of 91 out of 99, according to IBD Stock Checkup.

IBD’s Composite Rating is a blend of key fundamental and technical metrics to help investors gauge a stock’s strength. The best growth stocks have a Composite Rating of 90 or better.

Potential catalysts for Apple shares in the months ahead include rumors of the introduction of a mixed reality headset at the company’s Worldwide Developers Conference in June.

Follow Patrick Seitz on Twitter at @IBD_PSeitz for more stories on consumer technology, software and semiconductor stocks.

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