Apple will let us know on April 24 whether it's doing fabulously, pretty darn well, or -- the horror -- just so-so.
That's when the company will reveal its revenue and earnings for its second fiscal quarter, the one in which it released its new iPad. Consumers scooped up 3 million of those devices in the first weekend alone, in what Apple called "the strongest iPad launch yet." Not too shabby for a tablet that has come to define and dominate the marketplace and popular perception.
Apple surely has quite a head of steam built up. This morning, J.P. Morgan analyst Mark Moskowitz boosted his iPad forecast for the March-ending quarter to 13.8 million units, and he likewise upped his estimates for iPhone sales to 31.1 million devices.
For the preceding quarter, which ran through the end of December, Apple reported revenue of $46.33 billion and profits of $13.06 billion, or $13.87 per share.
Moskowitz also raised his price target for Apple shares to $715, up from an earlier target of $625, because of "mid-term catalysts," including coming refreshes to the iPhone and MacBook lines, and greater penetration into Asia-Pacific markets. Another analyst, Brian White of Topeka Capital Markets, yesterday boldly set a target of $1,001.
Such are the expectations that Apple will continue its steamroller-on-steroids success.
Apple's shares are trading at around $630 this morning. The company's stock crossed the $400 barrier just at the end of 2011, and it hasn't looked back since.
Correction, 8:59 a.m. PT: This story originally gave incorrect figures for Apple's earnings for the most recent December quarter. The numbers in the story have been corrected.