By Noel Randewich | SAN FRANCISCO
Apple’s (AAPL.O) stock extended recent losses on Monday after a warning that iPhone sales could suffer if President-elect Donald Trump follows through on campaign threats to impose new tariffs on China.
Apple is among several major technology stocks, including Amazon.com (AMZN.O), Facebook (FB.O) and Alphabet (GOOGL.O), selling off since Tuesday’s election as investors shift funds into financial and public works companies seen benefiting from deregulation and infrastructure spending under President-elect Trump.
In a continuation of that trend, the Cupertino, California company’s stock fell 2.5 percent on Monday, bringing its loss since Tuesday’s election to almost 5 percent, compared to the S&P 500’s .SPX 1.16 percent advance.
Adding to concern for Apple investors, an op-ed published in the China government-backed Global Times on Sunday warned of “tit-for-tat” retaliation should Trump follow through on a campaign pledge to impose 45-percent tariffs on all imports from China.
“A batch of Boeing (BA.N) orders will be replaced by Airbus. US auto and iPhone sales in China will suffer a setback, and US soybean and maize imports will be halted,” the op-ed said.
China has already become a disappointment for Apple, failing to deliver rapid growth that the company hoped would make up for slower iPhone sales in the United States and other mature markets.
Revenue from China slumped 30 percent in Apple’s September quarter, worse than the Americas’ 7 percent decline.
Apple’s China sales could be hurt by potential trade conflicts as well as the country’s weakening currency, said Rosenblatt Securities analyst Jun Zhang by email. He said he believes China iPhone sales fell in October, even after fixing supply issues affecting the iPhone 7 Plus.
Synovus Trust Company Senior Portfolio Manager Daniel Morgan, who owns $33 million worth of Apple shares, warned not to read too much into Trump’s campaign trail threats against China, at least in the near term.
“You just don’t just jump in and start rewriting trade agreements,” Morgan said.
(Reporting by Noel Randewich; Editing by Tom Brown)