Apple reported positive third-quarter financial results, citing great improvement in iPhone sales in China. Quarterly revenue reached $53.8 billion, an increase of 1% from the year-ago quarter, but quarterly earnings per diluted share were down 7%, at $2.18.
The electronics giant attributed 59% of the quarter’s revenue to international sales, while revenue from services reached an all-time high.
The company reported that trade-in programs and other promotions boosted its iPhone performance in China.
“We accomplished this despite strong headwinds from foreign exchange, which impacted the top-line growth rate by 300 points compared to a year ago, equivalent to $1.5 billion of revenue,” said CEO Tim Cook. “In constant currency, our revenue grew in all five of our geographic segments.”
He added, “This was our biggest June quarter ever — driven by all-time record revenue from services, accelerated growth from wearables, strong performance from iPad and MAC, and significant improvement in iPhone trends.”
Cook also mentioned that the rest of 2019 will bring “major launches on all of our platforms, new services, and several new products.” Among them will be Apple Card, which reportedly will launch in August, as well as Apple Arcade and Apple TV+.
Apple also reported strong operating cash flow of $11.6 billion. “We returned over $21 billion to shareholders during the quarter, including $17 billion through open market repurchases of almost 88 million Apple shares, and $3.6 billion in dividends and equivalents,” said CFO Luca Maestri.
For its fiscal fourth quarter that will end on Sept. 30, the company is projecting revenue between $61 billion and $64 billion, gross margin between 37.5% and 38.5%, operating expenses between $8.7 billion and $8.8 billion, other income (expense) of $200 million, and a tax rate of approximately 16.5%.
Early Wednesday afternoon, Apple stock was trading at $218.43, up $9.65 or 4.62%.