The recession can't stop people buying iPhones:
Apple Inc said on Tuesday that quarterly profit rose 26 percent, driven by sales of its new iPhone, but it issued a forecast for the current quarter well below Wall Street expectations.
After-hours trading in Apple shares were halted by the Nasdaq prior to the earnings announcement.
Apple reported a profit in its fiscal fourth-quarter ended September 27 of $1.14 billion, or $1.26 a share, up from $904 million, or $1.01 a share, in the year-ago period.
Revenue rose 27 percent to $7.9 billion.
Analysts were expecting the company to post a profit of $1.11 a share on revenue of $8.04 billion, according to Reuters Estimates.
Mac shipments are up 21%, iPod shipments higher by 8%. It's strange to think of people buying Nano's when they don't have enough for the groceries.
Meanwhile, E*Trade's loss is narrowing, but Yahoo slumped short of expectations by more than 50% (delivering 4 cents a share vs. 9 cents expected).
There's a theme here. Lots of companies are reporting stronger-than-expected earnings for the third quarter, while warning that things are about to get ugly.
That's reminiscent of the first quarter, when stronger earnings managed to avert a recession in Q2, but with many companies saying "it's all downhill from here over the summer." It's possible - just possible - that these Q3 earnings will be sufficiently strong to avert a catastrophic GDP figure this time round, but one which will then fall again when it comes to Q109.
In other words, we could continue dipping into these intra-quarterly recessions, while still avoiding any "official" recession being called. Unfortunately, if that happens then that could just prolong the pain in the market, since a selloff never really has time to work it's way through the system properly.