Apple shares move higher after steep two-day sell-off

  • Stock Market News
Apple shares move higher after steep two-day sell-off -- Shares in Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL ) climbed in early U.S. trading on Friday, paring back some losses from two straight days of declines that wiped around $200 billion off of the tech giant's market value.

Media reports suggesting that government officials in China have been barred from using Apple’s iPhone and other foreign-branded mobile devices at work have sparked concerns that Beijing is willing to sideline American companies in favor of Chinese players. China is a crucial market for Apple, with the country accounting for nearly a fifth of its total sales. 

Observers have warned that such a move, which has yet to be confirmed by either the Chinese government or Apple, could signal a deepening in ongoing trade tensions between the U.S. and China. Recently, some U.S. lawmakers have called for a blanket ban on tech exports to China, citing a breach of recent trade restrictions by two companies: Huawei and Semiconductor Manufacturing International (HK: 0981 ).

However, analysts at Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS ) argued that it is "unlikely" that the reported iPhone ban will "evolve into something broader."

“In a worst case scenario, we see 4% revenue and 3% [earnings per share] downside, suggesting the stock move is overdone,” the Morgan Stanley analysts added. 

Meanwhile, California-based Apple, which is gearing up to launch the latest model of the iPhone next week, faces fresh competition from a new family of high-end smartphones made by Chinese rival Huawei. Analysts at Citi said the launch of Huawei's Mate 60 gadget presents a "headline risk" for the company's shares.

The roughly 6% slide in Apple's stock price over the previous two sessions this week was felt in trading on Wall Street on Thursday, with the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite in particular slipping. The index rose on Friday morning. 

Elsewhere, Apple's regional suppliers in Asia saw their shares drop. South Korea's SK Hynix (KS: 000660 ), which supplies Apple with memory chips, fell by 4.1%, while phone display-provider Samsung Electronics (KS: 005930 ) shed 0.1%.

Taiwan’s Taiwan Semicon (TW: 2330 ) dipped by 1.5%, while Luxshare Precision Industry (SZ: 002475 ) in China, a source of connector cables for a slew of Apple devices, decreased by about 2.0%.

Hong Kong-listed supplier AAC Technologies) Holdings (HK: 2018 ), a builder of Apple's AirPods headphones, was down nearly 6% this week, although the stock did not trade on Friday due to a broader trade suspension in Hong Kong.

Ambar Warrick contributed to this report.

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