Thursday, Dec. 18, though, was a good day for both AAPL and the overall market, and as of mid-afternoon, AAPL was rising a bit more than the market as a whole.
Apple Wins Class-Action Antitrust Lawsuit
It took an Oakland, California, jury only three hours to find that Apple did not violate antitrust laws. If Apple had lost the class-action suit, it could have been on the hook for as much as a billion dollars.
The plaintiffs in the 10-year-old lawsuit claimed that updates to iTunes were made to prevent other companies’ music from playing on the iPod. The unanimous eight-person jury found that the updates were genuine improvements and therefore not anti-competitive. The plaintiffs said they plan to appeal.
Apple Stops Online Sales in Russia
Apple announced on Tuesday that “due to extreme fluctuations in the value of the ruble” it was halting sales through its online store in Russia while it continues to “review pricing.” Russia’s currency has been plummeting. Last month, Apple raised the price of the iPhone 6 there by 25 percent to compensate for the falling value of the ruble. Most of Apple’s sales in Russia take place via the online store. While iPhone sales doubled last year in Russia, the country is not considered a major market for Apple.
Apple Pay Will Expand Around the World
The site iClarified found several job listings that revealed Apple’s plans for expanding Apple Pay beyond the U.S. One ad, announcing jobs in London, said “Apple Pay is a new and exciting area in Apple that is set to expand across Europe, Middle East, India and Africa.” A second ad was looking for a “Pay Site Reliability” engineer to work in China.
Meanwhile, Apple Pay has been a hit in the U.S. On Tuesday, the company announced that it signed up more banks and other companies to work with its payment system, which now supports cards that are used for 90 percent of the volume of the country’s credit card transactions.
Could the Watch Be Apple’s Most Successful Product Ever?
An analyst for Global Equities Research thinks that the Apple Watch, which is expected to debut in the Spring, could be the most successful product that Apple ever made. He thinks every iPhone user will want the Watch because it will save them trouble of having to take their iPhones out of their pockets just to glance at some information, then put them away — a ritual he said users perform an average of 110 times per day.
Although this is an unusually optimistic prediction, excitement about the Apple Watch is widespread, as is the hype. A jewelry company is now taking pre-orders for a diamond-encrusted Apple Watch that it plans to sell for $30,000.
Invesco PowerShares QQQ
To invest in AAPL while diversifying your portfolio, consider an ETF such as QQQ, which tracks the NASDAQ 100 Index and currently has 14.10 percent of its holdings in AAPL.
By Diana Primavera, ETF Daily News