rising more than NASDAQ, but slightly less than the Dow, which did exceptionally well this week. Numbers for the five days — AAPL up 4.36 percent, NASDAQ up 3.83 percent, and the Dow up 4.5 percent.
Consumers Not Yet Sold on Idea of Apple Watch
Piper Jaffrey (NYSE: PJC) conducted a survey of almost 1,000 iPhone users and found that only 7 percent of them said they planned to buy the Apple Watch, expected to debut in the Spring. That’s a slight drop from surveys taken before.
However, the Piper Jaffrey analyst believes that more people will become interested in buying the Apple Watch when Apple starts releasing more information about what the device can do. There is still plenty of time left for excitement to build.
Apple Reopens its Online Russian Store
After temporarily closing its online Russian store last week due to the plunging values of Russian currency, Apple reopened the store on Monday and raised its prices by as much as 35 percent to compensate for the drop in the ruple’s value. Most of Apple’s sales within Russia take place via the online store.
Whole Foods Most Popular Place to Use Apple Pay
Apple Pay has been released for six weeks now, and so far, it’s been a hit. In November, it accounted for 1.7 percent of all mobile payment transactions
Whole Foods (NASDAQ: WFM) has been the most popular place to use the payment system, with 20 percent of all Apple Pay transactions taking place at the upscale grocery stores, according to a report from ITG Investment Research (NYSE: ITG). The second most popular sites to use Apple Pay were at Walgreens (NYSE: WAG) stores, and the third were at McDonald’s (NYSE: MCD) restaurants.
Although Google’s (NASDAQ: GOOG) mobile wallet system, which has been around for three years, far longer than Apple Pay, still holds a slightly larger share of the mobile payment market, that is likely to change, according to an ITG analyst, who said that Apple Pay users are more engaged. He predicts that usage of Apple Pay will increase as more people upgrade to compatible iPhones.
Even PayPal (NASDAQ: EBAY), which now has 78 percent of the mobile payment market, could be vulnerable to Apple Pay. The Apple system has tremendous appeal to consumers for its ease of use and for the fingerprint-reader security system on the iPhone 6.
Automatic Security Update
On Monday, Apple used new technology to perform its first ever automatic update to fix security vulnerabilities on the OS X. Apple called the process “seamless” — users didn’t have to do anything and might not even notice that the update had taken place.
Rumor: New, Thinner 12-Inch MacBook Air May Debut Early in 2015
According to a rumor from Taiwan, early next year, Apple will start producing a 12-inch MacBook Air that will be thinner and lighter than the current models. The rumor originated on the Digitimes website, which has a mixed record for the accuracy of its past rumors.
Invesco Powershares QQQ
If you would like to invest in AAPL while also diversifying your portfoilio, consider an ETF such as QQQ, which tracks the NASDAQ-100 index. AAPL is currently the largest holding in QQQ’s portfolio, accounting for 13.55 percent of its holdings. The fund’s market price has increased 13.80 percent year-to-date.
By Diana Primavera, ETF Daily News