Apple Investors Prepare For an Earnings Mood Swing

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is due to report earnings on Tuesday after the markets close. The stock, which closed Friday at $390.53 per share, is off 13.3 percent since January 24, one day after it reported first-quarter results. Investors and observers will remember that those results alone drove shares down more than 12 percent overnight.

All told, the bears seem to have the run of the place. Reuters reports that options pricing on Friday suggests a post-earnings move of about 7.5 percent by April 26 for Apple stock. According to Birinyi, a research firm cited by the publication, this would be the fourth-largest one-day post-earnings move in the past five years. A move of that magnitude would also exceed the average 5.4 post-earnings swing.

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Earnings estimates have come down nearly 14 percent over the past three months, according to The Wall Street Journal. Here’s an overview of past financial performance and mean expectations for the coming release:

Dec. 31, 2011 Mar. 31, 2012 Jun. 30, 2012 Sep. 30, 2012 Dec. 31, 2012 Mar. 31, 2013*
Revenue ($) in millions 46,146 39,032 34,960 35,833 54,521 42.60
Diluted EPS ($) 13.87 12.30 9.32 8.67 13.81 10.21

*Average analyst estimate

For its part, Apple guided second-quarter revenue in a range between $41 and $43 billion.

Here are some specific analyst estimates, as compiled by Philip Elmer-Dewitt at Fortune.

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Analyst / Firm Revenue ($) in billions EPS ($)
Mark Moskowitz, J.P. Morgan 43.64 10.58
Maynard Um, Wells Fargo 43.56 11.02
Stuart Jeffery, Nomura 43.51 10.43
Kulbinder Garcha, Credit Suisse 43.08 10.34
T. Michael Walkley, Canaccord Genuity 43.00 10.04
Keith Bachman, BMO Capital 42.98 10.08
Glen Yeung, Citigroup 40.45 9.23

Here’s how Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) traded Monday:

Screen Shot 2013-04-22 at 4.06.17 PM

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