Is the iPhone Upgrade Delayed?

Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares touched a new low on Monday as Cowen & Co. analyst Matthew Hoffman cut his current fiscal year estimates on the company after saying he expected the upcoming iPhone upgrade to be delayed.

Hoffman said his firm’s chip analyst Timothy Arcuri’s research showed that the construction of an iPhone 5S was trending toward the month of June, which was later than the April period of manufacturing the firm had earlier predicted. According to the analyst, the device may now launch in the fiscal fourth quarter, or the September-ending period.

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The analyst also said his checks showed retailers in Europe were cutting prices to move current iPhone units.

“Our European contacts suggest that channel remains well (over?) supplied with iPhones, though robust promotional activity is now helping to spur demand,” he wrote in a note to clients. “What is less clear is exactly how much support Apple is providing for those clearing campaigns. We note demand elasticity for lower-priced Apple smartphones remains high; remember that the $100 or so price cut on the iPhone 4S and 4 drove both SKUs into shortage during F1Q13”…

He added that the upgraded device was likely to come equipped with TD-SCDMA 3G network, which would be a step toward a partnership with China Mobile (NYSE:CHL). Hoffman was also certain that Apple will release at least one iPhone model with a display larger than five inches for late 2013 or 2014, which might “shore up the platform.”

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Hoffman cut his fiscal year 2013 estimate to $182 billion in revenue and $44.95 per share in net profit from a prior $188 billion in revenue and $46.70 per share in earnings.

However, he also reiterated an Outperform rating and raised his fiscal 2014 estimates to revenue of $217.4 billion and earnings per share of $55.25 from $212 billion and $55, respectively.

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