Jefferies’ Peter Misek Says ‘Terrible Yields’ On iPhone Fingerprint Sensor …

March 20, 2014

Jefferies analyst Peter Misek lowered his fiscal 2014 EPS estimate from $38.78 to $37.95 vs. the Street’s $42.66 ‘due to the iPhone 5c being priced like Apple Apple’s prior generation handsets rather than at a new level and our checks indicate 5s supply constraints due to poor yields on the fingerprint sensor.’ He also cut his price target from $450 to $425 and three other analysts downgraded Apple on Wednesday after the iPhone announcement. (Note my family and I own Apple shares). 

Misek estimates that there will only 5 to 10 million iPhone 5s’ could be built in the September quarter and that his 20 to 25 million estimate for the December quarter is exposed down to 15 million. 

He is also estimating that 20 million 5c’s will be manufactured in the September quarter increasing to 30 million in the December quarter but that the 30 million is exposed downwards. His estimates for the 4s are 5 to 8 million for the September quarter and 3 to 5 million for the December quarter. 

In total he estimates that the December quarter build plans were 55 to 60 million vs. the current 48 to 60 million with almost all the downside coming from the 5s since his checks indicate that the fingerprint sensor yields ‘have been terrible’. This could be the reason that Apple is not taking pre-orders for the iPhone 5s while it is for the 5c. 

He also believes that the 5c will not be well received in China due to it being a year old phone with a plastic case only having a 4” screen and often linked to a content store that is not superior to alternatives. The high price for the 5c is also leading him to cut his fiscal 2014 iPhone sales from 162 to 147 million.

Orders for the 5c start today in the eleven launch countries. Since the iPhone 3 in 2008 Apple has sent out a press release after the first day or weekend with the number of pre-orders. For the iPhone 5 there were over 2 million in the first 24 hours. While orders are a sign of demand vs. Misek’s production concerns it will be the first read on how the iPhone is being received. 

The stock is down $4.50 to $468 but still holding above its 50 and 200 day moving averages. 


Follow me on Twitter @sandhillinsight. Find my other Forbes posts here.

Originally posted 2013-09-13 22:32:04.

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