Apple Inc. (AAPL) To Discuss Q1 – 2011 Financial Results Today

Hot on the heels of yesterdays distressing news about Steve Jobs and his renewed need for medical leave, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) are set to announce record Q1 – 2011 financial results during a live conference call webcast at 2:00pm PT/5:00pm ET today.

With Steve Jobs at the helm Apple has returned from almost certain bankruptcy to become the second largest company in the world, and arguably the most influential cultural force in technology today – as well as the largest tech company globally.

Apple appears to have carefully planned the timing of its announcement about Steve Jobs’ “gardening leave”, so that it hit the wires when the US stock markets were shut. This has allowed the news to be digested and has probably reduced the effect on Apple’s stock price this morning when US markets reopened.

As of the writing of this article AAPL is trading at around $335 per share, down around $12 (or 3%) from its record high on Friday of last week. This is considerably less of a drop than the last time Apple announced a leave of absence for its iconic CEO. And also considerably less dramatic than most bloggers were predicting yesterday. This can again be attributed to just how good Apple’s current management team are. And let’s not forget Steve is still available for critical decisions the company needs to make, even though he is not “in the office” on a day to day basis.

Tech magazines, news channels and blogs are awash with differing estimates on just how much Apple will have made in the last quarter of 2010, the holiday quarter, and always its best sales period. The general consensus seems to be that Apple will announce yet more record breaking profits and have turned over in the region of $26 Billion Dollars, of which $6 Billion dollars will be profit.

Market Watch is reporting that “Wall Street, on average, expects the company to report earnings of $5.38 per share, up from $3.67 per share in the same period the previous year.”

To put this in perspective Apple’s Q1 earnings and turn over in 2001 were just $1.38 Billon and $38 Million, respectively. Quite a change!

Traditionally Apple’s share price drops slightly after earning announcements in any scenario; stellar, just good, or bad. So don’t expect fireworks, especially as the markets are still a little unsettled about the news on Steve Jobs’ health.

We’ll have a full report here tomorrow once the news has hit the wires. Are you expecting stellar earnings for Apple? Have your say in the comments…

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