Apple reported a 73% earnings surge for its latest quarter Wednesday, sending Apple shares up more than 8% to $148.10 in after-hours trading despite disappointing earnings guidance for its current quarter. Not that Apple's guidance is worth much — Apple blew past analyst estimates by a full 20 cents a share for its fiscal third quarter.
The explanation for the weak guidance: higher component costs, back-to-school discounts and a mysterious "product transition" will cause Apple earnings to come in lower than expected. Translation: Apple is going to shake up its product lineup.
The hint comes as strong sales of iPods and Macintosh computers — and lower than expected costs for parts such as flash memory — helped Apple rake in $818 million in net income for the three months ending June 30, or 92 cents per share, up from $472.0 million, or 54 cents per share, for the year-ago period. Apple also reported a 23% jump in sales to $5.41 billion.
What Apple is up to is still unknown. Perhaps new iPods or new notebooks, or maybe even both.