Stocks fell sharply Thursday after Apple warned first-quarter sales would be less than it previously expected. The iPhone maker blamed a slowing Chinese economy for the shortfall, intensifying fears that the global economy may be slowing down.
The Dow was down 560 points after tumbling more than 600 points earlier in the session as Apple led the decline. The S&P 500 pulled back 2 percent as the tech sector fell. The Nasdaq slid 2.4 percent as Apple’s stock dropped more than 10 percent.
A weaker-than-expected economic reading on manufacturing sent the Dow to its lows of the day.
“This piles on to existing anxiety of a slowdown in global growth,” said Jeff Kilburg, CEO of KKM Financial. “Apple can be used as a proxy to China’s growth.”
Apple said it sees first-quarter revenue of $84 billion vs. a previous guidance of a range of $89 billion and $93 billion. Analysts expected revenue of $91.3 billion for the period, according to the consensus estimate from FactSet. Apple blamed most of the revenue shortfall for struggling business in China. But the company also said that upgrades by customers in other countries were “not as strong as we thought they would be.”
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