Apple is having a brutal day in the stock market, with shares down 9% in the first hours of trading. Unless the stock rallies, that would mark the biggest single-session drop for the company since a 12% decline in 2013, reports MarketWatch. It all stems from Apple's surprisingly grim earnings forecast, with the company pinning much of the blame on China's slowing economy. Details and developments:
- Underestimated? While CEO Tim Cook might see China's economy as the main culprit, the Wall Street Journal reports that analysts suspect Apple underestimated Chinese phone-makers. Apple now ranks fifth among phone sellers in the nation, behind the likes of Huawei and BBK Electronics. “The others are a little closer to the pulse of what matters to Chinese consumers,” says one analyst.
- Tighter wallets: Cook isn't wrong about the current direction of the Chinese economy, however, with metrics such as factory activity and auto sales on the wane. That has translated into decreasing consumer confidence, which makes the prospect of shelling out more than $1,000 for a phone dicey. "People are worried about losing jobs," one ad designer tells the AP.