Apple seeing 'strong' iPhone demand into Black Friday, but supply worries persist: Wedbush

Seremin

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has continued to see strong demand for the iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max units and with the all-important Black Friday shopping weekend right around the corner, Wedbush Securities noted that the only thing holding back the tech giant will be supply.

“The zero Covid China shutdowns in Foxconn have been a major gut punch to Apple this quarter and we believe have taken roughly 5% of iPhone 14 units out of the supply chain and thus putting Cupertino in a ‘major shortage’ heading into the next month,” analyst Dan Ives wrote in a note to clients.

Ives added that Apple (AAPL) is likely to sell 8M iPhones this weekend, down from 10M last year, “with the gap being mostly supply driven.”

Delving deeper, Ives noted that despite the economic climate, there is “strong” iPhone upgrade activity from AT&T (T) and Verizon (VZ) and in store activity has been “solid” for Apple (AAPL) in most stores as well as its online channels. Nonetheless, inventory is an issue, with iPhone 14 storage options and colors seen as “limited” and only likely to get worse.

“We believe by early December it will be increasingly difficult to get your hands on an iPhone 14 Pro with many delivery times likely pushed through to early January,” Ives added.

Earlier this month, Apple (AAPL) warned that COVID-19 restrictions in the world’s most populated country would result in lower iPhone 14 shipments than previously expected.

We “now expect lower iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max shipments than we previously anticipated and customers will experience longer wait times to receive their new products,” the company said.

“COVID-19 restrictions have temporarily impacted the primary iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max assembly facility located in Zhengzhou, China,” Apple continued, adding that the facility was “operating at significantly reduced capacity.”

Following the Apple (AAPL) statement, several investment firms, including Morgan Stanley and UBS, tweaked estimates on the tech giant, but Morgan Stanley said investors had an emerging opportunity to “buy the dip.”